For those with asthma, travelling can be a bit more complicated than it is for most people. The changes in environment, altitude, and exposure to new allergens can all trigger asthma symptoms. However, with proper planning and preparation, people with asthma can still enjoy traveling and staying healthy on the go.
Before you travel:
- Consult with your doctor: It is essential to consult with your doctor before planning any trip, especially if you have asthma. Your doctor can advise you on how to manage your asthma while traveling and can provide you with a written asthma action plan.
- Make sure your asthma is under control: Make sure your asthma is well-controlled before you travel. This will minimize the risk of having an asthma attack while you’re away.
- Get your vaccinations: If you’re traveling to a different country, make sure you’re up-to-date on your vaccinations. Some diseases can worsen asthma symptoms.
- Pack your medications: Make sure you pack all of your asthma medications, including your rescue inhaler, in your carry-on bag. Don’t pack them in your checked luggage, as there’s a risk of losing them. Also, make sure your medications are labeled correctly and that you have enough to last the entire trip.
- Research your destination: Research your destination to find out what the air quality is like, and whether there are any known allergens or triggers in the area. This will help you prepare for any potential asthma triggers and plan accordingly.
During your trip:
- Stick to your routine: Try to stick to your usual asthma routine as much as possible. This includes taking your medications on schedule, even if you’re on vacation.
- Be aware of your surroundings: Be aware of your surroundings and take note of any potential asthma triggers. This includes things like smoke, pollution, and mold. If you’re staying in a hotel, make sure to ask for a room that is away from any potential triggers.
- Keep your rescue inhaler with you at all times: Make sure you always have your rescue inhaler with you, in case of an emergency.
- Monitor your symptoms: Pay close attention to your asthma symptoms and keep track of them. (RespiTrak anyone?) If your symptoms worsen, make sure to use your rescue inhaler and seek medical attention immediately.
Tips for staying healthy on the go:
- Get enough sleep: Make sure you get enough sleep while traveling. Lack of sleep can weaken your immune system, making you more susceptible to infections and asthma attacks.
- Eat a healthy diet: Eating a healthy diet can help keep your immune system strong and your asthma symptoms under control. Make sure to eat plenty of fruits and vegetables!
- Stay hydrated: Staying hydrated is essential for keeping your airways moist and preventing asthma attacks. Make sure to drink plenty of water, especially if you’re traveling to a dry or high-altitude destination.
- Exercise: Exercise can help keep your lungs healthy and prevent asthma attacks. Try to incorporate some physical activity into your travel itinerary, whether it’s a brisk walk or a yoga class.
In conclusion, traveling with asthma can be a bit more complicated than it is for most people. However, with proper planning and preparation, people with asthma can still enjoy traveling and staying healthy on the go. Consult with your doctor, make sure your asthma is under control, research your destination, and pack your medications. Be aware of your surroundings, monitor your symptoms and stick to your routine. Get enough sleep, eat a healthy diet, stay hydrated and healthy, and you’ll be enjoying your well-deserved break without worrying about asthma!