Subtle Self Care on a Plane (A Health Storylines Challenge)

Welcome to June’s Health Storylines Challenge! 

Plane rides can be a hell of a pain even if you’re looking forward to the destination. Recently I went on a trip to Ireland which was so fun and I want to go back again. But the plane rides to get there were a special kind of hell, especially when I was traveling with my wheelchair. So I’m going to give you some self care tips so you can conquer a plane ride big or small.

The first leg of the trip was getting from the airport in Columbus to Canada. Which was thankfully a short flight, but it was on a very small plane.

 For smaller planes I recommend you only have one distraction item out, such as a tablet or book because trust me you won’t have a whole lot of room for much else. Also when you’re packing your carry on bag that goes under the seat, make sure your meds are near the top of your belongings so you won’t have to dig for it. 

After our flight landed in Canada there was a fair bit of free time. If you have a long layover somewhere try to walk around as much as you’re able to so you lessen your chance of getting blood clots. And buy a couple bottles of water, planes are very dry. And if you didn’t pack snacks now would be the time to get some in case the airplane food isn’t good on your next flight. I would also recommend not sleeping during your layover so you have a better chance of sleeping on the plane. Also don’t forget to charge any electronics during your layover as well. International planes usually don’t have the normal wall plugs but they do have USB ports to charge your phone and other smaller electronics.

On international flights they also have small TVs on the back of each seat so you can watch a decent variety of shows and movies. I looked through the movie section and it did seem like they tried to add a decent variety of new movies and shows. You can also listen to a decent variety of music was well if you’re like me and can’t fall asleep with out some sort of sound. It’s a pretty good distraction. 

Other distractions can include Netflix if you download shows to your tablet or phone before you leave on the trip. You can also play games on your devices or read a book that you’ve really been looking forward to. You could also do things like word searches, sudoku or crossword puzzles. 

I also recommend if you’re on an overnight flight like I was, that you have a night and day dose of your medications sorted into a pill holder. That way you aren’t digging out a bunch of pill bottles and potentially lose one or have one stolen. I would also keep all your as needed meds within easy reach, potentially in a separate pouch. And maybe pack some Benadryl or other another sleep aid in case you have a hard time sleeping on the plane.

And neck pillows are one of the best things you can buy for a long flight. Or really any flight if you have neck problems. For this I’d recommend going to a luggage store, or somewhere you can actually try out the pillows and make sure you actually like it before you buy it. Also buy luggage tags! I recommend something colorful or kind of weird so it’s easy to spot. I’d put one on your luggage and if you’re traveling with a walker or wheelchair put one on it as well.

And I know flying can be super stressful, especially if you aren’t the biggest fan of it. To try to calm down I recommend meditation. You could also use essential oils if you’re into that kind of thing, you just have to be mindful of the other people around you as well. They make diffuser necklaces that are pretty subtle and aren’t super strong smelling as long as you don’t drown it in oil.

Thats all I have for now, I hope you guys find my self care tips useful for your next flight!

You can sign up here for a free Health Storylines account and then download the free app from the app store. You can use the app to track different aspects of your health, make notes and set medications alarms, there are also a lot of disease specific tools. 


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