How I Manage My RMS While Traveling
- by Julie R.
- December 10, 2018
Julie is a paid Advocate for Teva Neuroscience, Inc.
Traveling most weeks out of the year for my work is one of my favorite parts of life. When I’m on the road, I’m performing my music and living my dreams!
Traveling with relapsing multiple sclerosis (RMS) has its challenges, though. I’m hoping these tips will help make traveling more manageable.
- Stay Rested. The most challenging part of travel for me is making sure I get enough rest. To ensure I get adequate sleep, I have introduced several habits into my routine.
•If possible, I go to bed earlier than normal the night before I travel so I can get ahead of myself and be rested before starting my trip. Crossing time zones when traveling could confuse my body, so I try to plan for extra sleep in advance.
•When planning my itinerary, I try to give myself a little bit of time to rest before any commitments. I love seeing everything I can in a new place but sometimes my body tells me I need to take a nap first, so I schedule time for that.
•Maintaining my usual sleep schedule and wellness routine when traveling also helps me control fatigue. This is often difficult when I’m vacationing because I want to squeeze so much in over just a few days. I have learned that in order for me to enjoy most things, I have to prioritize my list of “want to do” activities. I carefully pick and choose what I want to do most and allow time to rest in between events.
- Stay Active. An important part of my wellness routine at home is working out in a gym or hiking. I love being active and it helps me feel more energized and alert. In order to do this when traveling, I have to plan time to exercise. All I need in my day is to find at least 30-45 minutes for my fitness routine. I try to make it fun! If I’ve never been to the city I’m visiting and the weather is nice I love doing interval cardio outside. It’s a great way to see new places! I also sleep better in hotels when I have done some sort of MS-friendly activity to get my heart rate up during the day. As always, it’s best to speak with a healthcare professional before beginning any new activity.
- Stay Compliant With My Therapy. Traveling for work or pleasure interrupts my daily routine, but I make it a priority to stay compliant with my COPAXONE® (glatiramer acetate injection). My neurologist recommends I administer my shot on the same days every week at the same time of the day. When I first began COPAXONE®, I was concerned about traveling with my injections. Would the airlines care if I had injections in my luggage? How long could I leave my medicine out of the refrigerator on a long drive or flight? I asked both my neurologist and my injection training nurse about each of these scenarios and was put at ease. If you are concerned about traveling with your medication, I would advise you to speak with your healthcare provider. As far as the airline scenario goes, I’ve learned a few things to help make your travels smoother. If I travel by plane, I always take my COPAXONE® in my carry-on bag just in case my luggage gets lost. I always keep my prescription on hand in case I ever need to show it to an airport official. Always knowing where my COPAXONE® is during my travels puts my mind at ease!
- Eat Well. Eating well helps me feel my best while I’m on a trip and at home. This is probably the hardest thing for me to do when traveling. Eating at restaurants, truck stops or airports is tough when I’m trying to keep a balanced diet, but I have noticed healthier options are more available on menus everywhere.
When I visit places, I love to experience the culture, and trying new cuisine is so much fun for me. When traveling for work, I choose one meal a day to enjoy the local specialty. For the other meals, I try to stick to eating lean proteins and fresh vegetables. The healthful meals also help give me the stamina I need to enjoy my time away from home.
- Be the Weather Girl. Rising temperatures and life with RMS can present new challenges. Before traveling to a new place, I check the weather multiple times so I can properly plan my activities. This helps me know what clothes I should pack for my trip. I always temporarily add the city I’m headed to as one of the favorites on my phone’s weather app to keep me informed.
I believe if we plan our trips around the things we need to help us feel well, our travels could be much smoother and more fun! Remember, the most important step of all is to be purposeful. A little planning goes a long way and allows us to enjoy each destination. Happy traveling!
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COPAXONE® (glatiramer acetate injection) is a prescription medicine that is used to treat relapsing forms of multiple sclerosis (MS), to include clinically isolated syndrome, relapsing-remitting disease, and active secondary progressive disease, in adults.
Do not use COPAXONE® if you are allergic to glatiramer acetate or mannitol.
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Jim | December 26, 2018Julie you seem to be doing really well. Those are lots of good tips. I only wish I could do half the things you talked about.
I am in my early 60s and travel a fair amount, both domestically and internationally. I’m able to do moderate exercise, but nothing sustained for more than 10-15 minutes. But something is better than nothing and I do something every day!
You mentioned sleep and
Tom | December 29, 2018This artical sounds like U have the most availablie Attatude Good Girl !
Agnes (A.B.) | December 29, 2018I am not receiving much support here. My internet is limited. Weird, but it happens.
Elizabeth | December 29, 2018My insurance is no longer covering copaxone that is within my budget..any other suggestions?
Teva's Lift MS® Team | January 02, 2019We’re glad you asked! Visit https://www.copaxone.com/shared-solutions/copaxone-savings-and-benefits for information on available financial assistance, Elizabeth.
Franny Perez | December 29, 2018Thank you .. Happy New Year🎉
terry HOLLIS | January 08, 2019I AM TAKING THIS TIME TO THANK TEVA FOR ALL THE YEARS THEY STUCK BY ME THROUGH THE UP S AND DOWNS
I HAVE NOTHING BUT LOVE AND HONER FOR THERE WHOLE CREW OF KIND MEN AND WOMEN THAT HELD THE HONER OF A NUMBER ONE GROUPE THAT AL;WAYS HAD THE PATENT HEALTH HELD ABOVE EVERYTHING ELSE
I WAS TOLD THAT VERY SAME WORDS FROM A TEVA C E O FACE TO FACE . AND I BELIEVED EVERY WORD . THANK YOU
Dell | January 15, 2019Diagnosed 6 years ago. Was told by injection nurse to get a travel kit from Shared Solutions. It is wonderful for travel! I have flown domestic and also international many times and have never had an issue. I always pull the kit out and place it in a manner where security can tell what it is easily. There is a place inside where RX paperwork can be put. Security has never opened kit!