Travel is always exciting, even for the weary business traveler. It is a luxury to get on a plane or train and head off into new adventures. First COVID, and now the variants are making travel a lot more difficult. Some people haven’t taken even a small family vacation in two years. That might not seem like a lot of time. But when stress is high, we need ways of relieving that stress. For many families, stress management comes down to staging little getaways throughout the year.
Others defer the little getaways to enjoy one big trip every few years. Neither is right or wrong. But the big trip every few years is a bit more risky because if something unforeseen like a pandemic arises, it can be a very long time before you can let off some steam. That has been the situation for a lot of people who are starting to feel the walls close in. That pent-up anticipation can make you a bit too excited when you finally get to take that long-awaited vacation. You just want to get out the door and fail to plan for the worst. Before heading out, take a moment to make the following preparations:
Find Medical Providers
If you have chronic medical issues, you need to do a little reconoscence before you leave home. Traveling up the east coast to visit family? Ask your doctor about physical therapy in Edison, NJ or Albany, NH or Camden, ME – or any other place close to where you will be staying. Going on vacation is not a good reason to skip those physical therapy appointments. Sessions usually don’t last more than 30 or 40 minutes. And those sessions are doing you a lot of good. You can book those appointments before you leave and plan your activities accordingly.
If you have recently had surgery or are being treated for an ongoing problem, you will want to call ahead and be sure there is a doctor in the area that also takes your insurance. That way, if your vacation activities become too much, you know where to turn for help.
If you haven’t done some of your favorite extreme activities in a while, it is not unusual to sprain, pull, or even break something on vacation. After being away from it for so long, no one will blame you for overdoing it a little. It is both understandable and predictable. That is why you should make arrangements before you go.
Cold and Flu
It is paramount that you learn how to protect your health while traveling. Some of the biggest events, expos, and conferences are scheduled during what is typically the worst of cold and flu season. So it is unsurprising that people who go to a lot of conferences end up catching some bug every time. This is far from ideal if you have a family that can also get sick. Even if you don’t get sick, you could still spread sickness to others. That is why preparation is so important.
It is always a good idea to carry a face mask to protect yourself and others from coughs and sneezes. That was considered common sense in many cultures well before the pandemic. You also want to carry hand sanitizer and use it frequently. One of the best precautions you can take is to end the habit of shaking hands. A bow or elbow bump is quite acceptable.
Even if there is nothing wrong with your back, a trip tends to bring out the pain. That is because you are doing a lot more standing and walking than usual. You can be proactive by being a little more aggressive with over-the-counter pain reliever. Take it before you need it and you can keep the worst of it at bay. You will also want to pack the most comfortable shoes you have. Back pain starts with your feet. Protect your feet with the right kind of shoes and you will eliminate a lot of the lower-body discomfort that always comes with travel.
Some things are unexpected. But some things are quite predictable. When you travel, whether it be for business or pleasure, be sure to keep your physical therapy appointments, protect yourself from cold and flu infection, and wear the kind of shoes that will keep the back pain away.