Lymphedema: Our Ten Best Travel Tips

Our Spring Guest PostLymphedema: Our Ten Best Travel Tips

This week, we’re excited to partner with Sue Callison, who will share her top 10 travel tips for managing lymphedema. With Spring Break right around the corner, I thought this might be invaluable information for those dealing with lymphedema. Sue is the founder of Solidea U.S. and a breast cancer survivor who developed lymphedema from her treatments. She has a wealth of knowledge about compression garments and the lymphedema condition. I hope you enjoy this guest blog post.

Sue’s Top Ten Lymphedema Travel Tips

Unfortunately, traveling can put a real strain on our lymphedema. Here are some tips to help!Lymphedema: Our Ten Best Travel Tips 5

1. The number one way to keep a handle on your lymphedema while traveling is to wear compression garments. I feel way more relaxed traveling in my Solidea Active Massage compression garments because I know I’m helping my body move any excess fluid that traveling may cause.

2. If you have lymphedema in your arm, be sure to wear compression that covers your hands, like a gauntlet. If you have lymphedema in your leg, make sure to wear compression that covers your feet, like socks, even if you don’t typically wear these types of garments. Fluid nearly always takes the path of least resistance. So, if you’re not protected, this is where fluid tends to go.

3. Take deep belly breaths to help keep your lymph system moving.

4. Drink water and stay hydrated.Lymphedema: Our Ten Best Travel Tips 3

5. Sitting in one spot for too long can increase your swelling.* If you’re flying or traveling by train or bus, take a few bathroom breaks (even if you don’t have to go). If you’re driving, hit a couple of rest stops on the way so you can get out and move around.

*When you travel, it’s common for feet to swell. If you are at risk for this, don’t take your shoes off because the increased swelling could make it very difficult to put them back on. Another option is to wear adjustable shoes so if your feet swell, you can adjust your shoes to fit.

6. Even in cramped spaces, remember to move around. Stretch your arms above your head and side to side, wiggle your fingers and toes, rotate your wrists, do lower leg lifts, etc.

7. Avoid carrying heavy bags as much as possible. Use a cart if you’re a big packer. Remember, if you have lymphedema in your arm, don’t carry your bags by the shoulder straps on the affected side. Cutting off and constricting lymph vessels in the already compromised area may increase swelling.Lymphedema: Our Ten Best Travel Tips 2

8. Keep anything important for managing your lymphedema with you or in your carry-on. You should be able to access your compression garments, moisturizer, and supplies (including a small first aid kit for any accidental cuts) at all times.

9. Keep a list of emergency contacts, medications, and your doctor’s information so you’re ready for anything that comes your way.

10. Have a great time!

What Travel Tips Do You Have?

I hope you found this guest blog post helpful! Do you have any tips or tricks for traveling with lymphedema that you would like to share? Please comment below and let us know what works best for you! The more we share, the more benefits we all have. Thank you, Sue!

Disclaimer—This blog is for general information purposes only and is not a substitute for medical advice. Always consult a licensed healthcare professional for advice on your specific condition.

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