Written by Alison Stickel
Travelling and vacationing is obviously meant to be a relaxing, fun and break away from home and work. However, it is easy to forget about your health while travelling and accidents can unfortunately occur. It’s important to stay healthy during travelling. Travelling causes you to put yourself in unnatural physical positions. This includes sitting in cramped spaces, sitting for prolonged periods of time, or walking for extended amounts. Here are a couple of tips to prevent common injuries while travelling.
Drink Lots of Water!
- On Vacation it is often times easy to forget to drink enough water when new cafes, bars, and more surround you. Make sure to drink appropriate amounts of water, especially when in hotter and humid climates to prevent dehydration. Also you may be exercising and walking more on your trips, making it more important to drink enough water.
- Take Breaks
- Take breaks while sitting for long periods on airplanes, trains, buses and more. Often times these spaces can be very cramped and can cause discomfort and tightening of your muscles. While driving make sure to take breaks to stretch your legs and refresh your mind. If you are traveling by an airplane or train make sure to walk up and down the airless and pump your ankles up and down to promote blood flow.
- Mind Your Posture
- While sitting for long periods of time, such as airplanes, buses, cars etc., make sure to sit up properly. Avoid shrugging your shoulders forward and slumping in your chair. Think about relaxing your shoulders, lifting your chest, and maintaining a level chin. You should feel comfortable in your back and in your legs. Adjustment of your seat may be necessary to reach this position.
- Lift Luggage Properly
- It is easy to pull and strain muscles while lifting heavier objects such as suitcases while traveling. The first key to success it to try to pack light so that you do no to lift as much over your holiday. While lifting luggage use proper technique, which includes using your legs and holding the luggage close to your body. Avoid using your back and creating twisting movements while lifting luggage.
- Prevent Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT)
- Deep Vein Thrombosis, also known as a blood clot is a common and serious medical condition while traveling. It can be a real threat while on long flights that require sitting in a cramped space for a long time. To prevent this injury it is necessary for you to follow all of the above following tips, especially taking breaks and moving around.
- Knowing the warning signs is also essential in order to ensure proper medical assistance. The most common signs are swelling, cramping, warmth redness, or pain in the calf region. Pain and swelling can also be present in other extremities.
- DVT can develop into Pulmonary Embolism, (PE), which is the blocking of the lungs from a blood clot. The most common signs of PE include irregular breathing, irregular heartbeat and chest discomfort. This is a serious medical condition that can be prevented if the signs of DVT are noticed and treated early on.
Don’t let a current or pre-existing injury, muscle tightness or immobility prevent your from taking a relaxing and fun holiday. If you feel as if you are physically limited to take a holiday, you can benefit from physiotherapy in order to get well for travel. Physiotherapists can provide therapeutic massages, manual therapy, dry needling, muscle stimulation techniques and more in order to get you well for your holiday!