Travel can be one of the joys of life - and sometimes a necessity - but if you are coping with a bladder control problem or soiling, it can be an anxious time. Planning ahead will help prevent embarrassment and hassles and make your trip so much more enjoyable.
6-8 weeks in advance of your trip discuss your travel plans with
your GP. Depending on your destination you may need vaccinations or booster shots.
Talk to your doctor about medicines to take away with you. Do you
need prescription medicines or products for constipation, vomiting or diarrhea? Keep your medicines in their original packaging when travelling overseas.
Book early and advise your agent of your needs. Book seats on the
aisle, near a toilet or near the front of the bus/plane (where you can exit quickly).
Plan each stage of your trip accordingly. If you wear absorbent
pads for bladder leakage, allow an extra supply for unexpected delays.
Check about possible extra luggage allowance when booking if
you're taking a large supply of continence products.
Inform airline staff of your needs so you can board the plane first.
You'll be able to calmly organize and arrange your continence products, clothing and carry-on luggage.
Choose clothes in dark colors (to disguise any leakage) that are
easy to remove and comfortable to wear (elastic waists, track pants or longer, loose-fitting tops).
For women travelling in the tropics, a sarong is handy to hide a
leakage accident. It can also be placed on a chair. A jacket or cardigan can be tied around the waist to disguise an accident.
Take along a small toilet bag in your carry-on bag, plus a change
of clothing. Disposable wipes are handy generally and especially good for faecal incontinence.
Drink plenty of ‘good' fluids (water is best) as air conditioning is
dehydrating. Don't be tempted to cut down on fluids to reduce urine leakage as it can actually make things worse.
Eat light meals so you won't feel uncomfortable, bloated or queasy.
Your digestion and body clock can be upset when travelling.
Avoid bladder irritants such as coffee, tea, alcohol, chocolate
drinks, fizzy soft drinks and sports drinks. Spicy or acidic foods are best avoided too.
Stretch and walk as much as you can, to help with circulation and
digestion. Seated exercises (like those recommended by airlines) are good.