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Traveling with Chronic Pain

07/12/2019 • Quell Team

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The stress and anxiety that comes with traveling can often make preparing for a big trip feel overwhelming instead of exciting. If chronic pain is also coming along for the ride, it can be even harder to look forward to a stress-free trip.

It’s common for those living with chronic pain to feel anxious about symptoms and worry that they will experience a flare up that will hinder their travel experience. This begins a vicious cycle that can actually heighten sensitivity and even cause or exacerbate the symptoms that you are dreading so much. The good news is that there are simple things that can be done to ease the burden of traveling with chronic pain.

Comfort is key

An upcoming long flight or drive confined to a cramped area can be daunting if you’re worried about a pain flare-up. Making sure that you’re comfortable during the flight is vital to keeping pain at bay and getting through a full travel day. Wearing loose clothing and packing comfort items like a travel pillow can go a long way (literally!). If you’re flying and can splurge on airline add-ons, checking your luggage and selecting a seat with extra leg room can mean the difference between gliding into your destination or starting your experience with a bumpy ride.

Going abroad with prescriptions

If you are planning an extended trip out of the country, getting ample amounts of prescription medication to take with you before you leave can be a tall order. If you’re staying in the country, most national pharmacies such as CVS and Wal-Mart can refill your prescriptions at any location in the U.S., but you’ll always want to check before you leave home. Don’t forget to also do some research ahead of time and find out what pharmacies will be near the location where you will be staying and have information on each of your prescriptions in case you need to provide additional information to security what they are. When packing, place your medications in your carry-on instead of your check-in bags to avoid a situation where your bags are delayed or lost and you end up being without your medications. Alternatively, there are many treatments available that don’t require a prescription, such as Quell.

Work sleep into your schedule

When in a new city, it can be tempting to pack in as many tourist attractions and activities that you can. When planning your itinerary, keep in mind that the quality of the experience matters just as much as the quantity. Running from stop to stop can be chaotic, and that stress can trigger pain symptoms. Sleep and pain are deeply connected, so allocating enough time to rest while traveling will be sure to pay off in the long run.

Timing can make a difference

If you are able to travel during the middle of the week, that could make all the difference in your travel experience. Mid-week tends to be less busy than on the weekends, which means less likely for delays and waiting in long lines. So if all possible, travel in the middle of the week.
How do you manage traveling with chronic pain? If you have any tips that you’ve found helpful to manage your chronic pain while traveling, please share them! Plan to take Quell along with you for a trip soon? Please tag @quellrelief or #Quellrelief in your social posts. We’d love to see Quell at work out in the world. Safe travels!

About The Author
Quell Team
Quell Team

The Quell Team is comprised of members of the Marketing, Engineering and Customer Care teams at NeuroMetrix. We are committed to empowering people living with chronic pain to regain a high quality of life. We believe that life shouldn’t be defined by a condition. We believe that no one should have to settle for crippling side effects and we imagine a future where therapies are accessible, available and usable for anyone who needs it.

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