Staying healthy while traveling can be challenging.
Traveling is wonderful. And traveling for work offers unique freedoms. But long drives and extended time in a car can take its toll on our health. Sitting in the car too long can lead to tight muscles and stiff joints, making it challenging to walk when we arrive at our destination. Not being diligent to stay hydrated, and take needed bathroom breaks, can also be hard on our bodies as we age. It is tempting and easy to fill up on unhealthy snacks and junk food, but that can lead to unpleasant issues with our digestive track not cooperating…
Planning ahead increases our ability to stay healthy while traveling.
Planning ahead for extended driving/riding is a great way to be proactive and prevent problems. Being prepared with supplies to support good alignment and reduce pain in the care is helpful. Taking the time to pack healthy travel snacks and having awareness of self care can make a positive impact on your trip. Faithful hydration and bathroom breaks can help prevent urinary infections, and eating healthy food can help us to have more energy and stay regular. Taking the time to care for yourself with car exercises and walking breaks can reduce stiffness and potential for blood clots. The longer the drive, the more difficult it may become to get in and out of the car, and to walk around without increasing pain.
One item I have had many patients tell me helped them with getting into and out of their car, is the car cane. (affiliate link)
Keep track of your hydration! Check out this water bottle with measurements for hydration goals: (affiliate link)
Tips to plan ahead to stay healthy:
- Add stops to your route every 1 1/2 to 2 hours for bathroom breaks and walking.
- Pack healthy fiber rich travel snacks and water.
- Bring a tennis ball, small pillow etc. for posture and positioning, and massaging sore muscles.
Healthy choices while traveling:
- Scoot the passenger seat back to make room for leg movement and ankle pumps.
- Change positions now and then, but maintain good spinal alignment.
- Take a nice deep breath and relax your shoulders every hour.
Travel tips after arriving:
- Take some time to walk and stretch to loosen up.
- Take it easy as you may be worn out from the travel.
- Continue eating healthy foods rich in fiber, and drinking water to stay regular.
- You may need to use ice, heat, or medication due to soreness. However, a good night’s rest will help you recuperate from travel.
Help your senior clients stay healthy while traveling by educating them with this freebie handout.
Check out this healthy travel freebie for seniors! Print this handout to educate your clients!
If you like the Traveling Tips handout above, check out the senior care health checklist packet on Creative Home Therapy at Etsy.com!
For more patient education, The CDC also has excellent detailed health and travel advice.
I would love to hear your feedback on senior travel tips! Subscribe for a few more printable freebies, and occasional emails on senior health and caregiving: