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  • Writer's pictureDr. Nahir

"Smooth Travels: Tips for Beating Constipation and Urinary symptoms on the Go!"

Hi Anchor Family as spring break and spring travel plans are approaching, we know that this can be an exciting time for many but also a concerning time with the unique challenges that your bladder and bowels can face when going on vacation. Whether you are embarking on a road trip, flying to a new destination, or exploring unfamiliar cities, prioritizing bladder and bowel health is essential to ensure a comfortable and enjoyable journey. We wanted to share our most valuable tips to keep your bowel and bladder happy and healthy during your travel plans: 

  1. Stay Hydrated: While it may seem counterintuitive, staying hydrated is essential for bladder health and preventing constipation. Dehydration can irritate the bladder and exacerbate urinary symptoms. A helpful tip may be to carry a refillable water bottle with you and aim to drink small, frequent sips of water throughout the day.

  1. Limit Bladder Irritants: Minimize consumption of bladder irritants such as caffeine, alcohol, artificial sweeteners, and acidic foods and beverages while traveling. These substances can exacerbate urinary urgency and frequency. If you know you will be on a long road trip or flight, try to limit bladder irritants to reduce urgency and frequency.

  1. Practice Relaxation Techniques: If you experience anxiety or urgency related to bladder issues while traveling practice relaxation techniques such as deep breathing, meditation, or progressive muscle relaxation to help reduce stress and tension, this can also help to manage constipation. To help reduce bladder and bowel symptoms it is helpful to calm your mind and body.

  1. Pack Fiber Supplements: Consider bringing along fiber supplements such as psyllium husk or fiber gummies to help move your bowels. Magnesium has also been shown to help with bowel movements and can be helpful when traveling. Be sure to drink plenty of water when taking fiber supplements to prevent them from worsening constipation. (Disclaimer: it’s always best to discuss with your doctor before starting a new supplement)

  1. Pack Essentials: Carry travel-sized packs of personal hygiene products, including hand sanitizer, wipes, and tissues, in case restroom facilities are not readily available or not adequately stocked with supplies.

  1. Wear Comfortable Clothing: Choose loose-fitting, comfortable clothing that will not put pressure on your abdomen or restrict bladder function. Consider wearing layers for temperature control and ease of access during restroom breaks.

  1. Don’t Hover! We know restrooms can be gross. Try to strategically plan stops at places that notoriously have clean restrooms (looking at you Buccees) or use toilet paper over the seat so you can comfortably sit on the seat. Hovering over the seat doesn’t allow the pelvic floor to fully relax and can lead to incomplete emptying which can worsen bladder and bowel symptoms. 

  1. Stay Active: Constipation is one of the biggest issues people face with traveling. Physical activity can stimulate bowel movements and help alleviate constipation. Take short walks during layovers or rest stops, stretch your legs during long flights or car rides, and incorporate gentle exercises like yoga or stretching into your daily routine.

  1. Manage Stress: Traveling can sometimes be stressful, which may exacerbate constipation. Practice stress-reduction techniques such as deep breathing, meditation, or yoga to help relax your body and mind

Remember that everyone's bladder and bowel habits and needs are different, so it is essential to find strategies that work best for you. By implementing some of these tips and planning ahead, you can enjoy your travels with greater comfort and confidence. If you're still struggling with urinary symptoms or constipation, pelvic floor therapy could be the answer. Click Here to schedule your FREE consult with Anchor Pelvic Physical Therapy today!

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