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  • Travel advice

    Just wondering if anyone has any good travel advice. I have plans to go to Europe ( will get an appt so that I can cook for myself ) in the next 6 months and am a bit apprehensive given a diagnosis of IC. Has anyone traveled far afield and done ok? I've traveled a lot in the past and don't want to give it up. Any pearls if wisdom on traveling and IC would be greatly appreciated!

    Suzi

  • #2
    Hello,
    I wrote this post after spending a month in Málaga, Spain in a Spanish language immersion program. There will probably be some tips that will be useful to you.
    http://www.ic-network.com/forum/show...ghlight=travel

    Tomorrow I return home from a two week trip for French language immersion in Quebec City, Canada. This has been the most amazing trip!!! I arranged through the language school to have a studio apartment so I could cook, and was thrilled that the landlady lives downstairs and invited me to bring my plate downstairs to join her and the other students for dinner every night. I've met students from around the world, made lots of new facebook friends and have thoroughly enjoyed the city and learning French. I'm going to write an updated travel tips article soon based on this trip and the ones I've taken previously with IC.

    A couple of things that I did this trip:
    I bought one of those personal Brita bottles so I could fill it with tap water from the house in the morning. The water here is safe, so I could do that. I tend to flare from water with added minerals and that was all I found in Spain, so I wish I'd had the Brita bottle there... I think it was about $10 at Walgreens.

    I packed a box of Quaker Instant Oatmeal envelopes and little bags of almonds so I would have something to eat in the airport and when I first arrived if the stores were closed (especially important in Europe where grocery stores are not open late or on Sundays). It's pretty easy to find hot milk or hot water at a cafe - so with the oatmeal packet- there's an instant IC friendly meal...

    If I think about anything else, I'll let you know. But, yes, for me travel did become possible again, just with modifications
    Kadi

    -------------------------------------------------------------
    I am not a medical authority nor do I offer medical advice. In all cases, I strongly encourage you to discuss your medical treatment with your personal medical care provider. Only they can, and should, give medical recommendations to you.
    ------------------------------------------------------


    New favorite quote: "God gives us only what we can handle. Apparently God thinks I'm a bad-ass" ~Author Unknown
    Source - Pinterest
    "


    Current treatments:
    -IC diet
    -Elavil 50mg at night
    -Continuous use birth control pills (4-5 periods/year)
    -Heparin/Marcaine/Sodium Bicarb home instills at night 3-4x per week, more often if needed
    -Pyridium if needed,
    -Pain medicine at bedtime daily, as needed during the day several times per week
    -Antibiotic when doing an instillation to prevent UTI
    -Colace & SmartFiber to treat chronic constipation from meds, Fleet enema as needed
    -Dye Free Benadryl 50 mg at bedtime
    -"Your Pace Yoga: Relieving Pelvic Pain" dvd, walking, treadmill at gym
    -Managing stress= VERY important!
    -Fur therapy: Hugging the cat!

    Comment


    • #3
      Briza, thanks for the reply. Unfortunately, the link for whatever reason isn't working. Perhaps I'm doing something wrong?

      Kadi, wow!! I really admire your sense of adventure and your strength!! These are great travel tips!!!! Please, write an update when you have time. I look forward to it.

      I'm so happy to hear that you enjoyed your time in Quebec. I am Canadian but from the west coast. I have had the opportunity to spend quite a bit of time in Montreal and always have a fabulous time. Where in Quebec were you studying?

      I think one of the benefits of renting an spartment and cooking for yourself is having to go to the shops and mingling with the locals. I think you would have to get relatively proficient with the language to read all of the ingredients on the food packages. That would certainly motivate me! Next year I hope to rent an apartment in France so that my family snd I can study at a local language school.

      Did you have any problems reading ingredients on food labels? I'm going to have to figure out what to do about the water situation though. I recently read about a young woman with IC studying in Morocco. That was inspiring too!!

      I hope you have a safe journey home and look forward to hearing more about your travel adventures!

      Bonne chance!

      Suzi

      Comment


      • #4
        Salut Suzi!

        I knew so little French that when I arrived here in Quebec City, my school gave me a language proficiency test leveled from 1-5, and I scored a ZERO (which just made me laugh at this opportunity to practice humility). When I traveled in Spain, I was already highly proficient in Spanish, so no issues there with language.

        Here, I found my only food difficulties were with restaurants. Quebec City is fairly touristy (Vieux Quebec) - so no problem finding servers who spoke English, but most of the restaurant food had ingredients that were problematic for me to eat. So, when I went for happy hour conversation with my language school, I ordered a hot tea (then gave the tea bag to a friend and just drank the hot water). I found one crepes restaurant that used all fresh ingredients, so I ate there several times and other than that, ate at home. Buying groceries was easy in QC - mainly fresh vegetables, rice, pasta, potato, meat. I didn't buy much packaged stuff, but reading the packages--- chemical ingredients look the same in most languages. Oddly enough, I could not find a bread without vinegar or acidic preservative here, so for the 2 weeks, I ate potatoes, pasta & microwaveable cups of minute rice.

        Spain, well, food there was harder. I went in July. It southern Spain,so it was stinkin' hot. There had been a truckers' strike right before I went & lots of produce and fresh foods had spoiled on the trucks. For that month, I ate a lot of canned corn, carrots, steak, fresh bread. When I went out, I ate croissants & steamed milk a lot.

        My attitude about travel is that I make it as comfortable as I can for myself. I take the easiest flights I can afford. I stay a bit longer in a place, so if I flare - no big deal. I stay somewhere I can cook, and beyond those steps, I figure if I wanted all the comforts of home, I'd stay home. If I want a bit of adventure, I try to find ways to make it work...

        I can't wait to come back to Quebec City again, with more French. It's got so many aspects that are similar to Europe without the transatlantic flight and expense. I'm thinking about visiting Nova Scotia next. I went to Vancouver BC a few years ago and loved it also. Canada is a beautiful country with some of the nicest people I've met anywhere and I think it's a great place to travel.

        Let me know if you have any questions, ok? I've gone to language school 4 times now (Cuernavaca Mexico (*This was before I got IC, I wouldn't go there now with my level of IC), Spain-Madrid (also before IC) & Málaga, just now - Quebec City). My trips to Málaga & Québec City were both after I got my IC under control. I'm not in remission, I have symptoms every day, but I'm doing all right and most of my days are fine

        Best,
        Kadi
        Last edited by kadi; 09-30-2011, 03:48 PM.
        Kadi

        -------------------------------------------------------------
        I am not a medical authority nor do I offer medical advice. In all cases, I strongly encourage you to discuss your medical treatment with your personal medical care provider. Only they can, and should, give medical recommendations to you.
        ------------------------------------------------------


        New favorite quote: "God gives us only what we can handle. Apparently God thinks I'm a bad-ass" ~Author Unknown
        Source - Pinterest
        "


        Current treatments:
        -IC diet
        -Elavil 50mg at night
        -Continuous use birth control pills (4-5 periods/year)
        -Heparin/Marcaine/Sodium Bicarb home instills at night 3-4x per week, more often if needed
        -Pyridium if needed,
        -Pain medicine at bedtime daily, as needed during the day several times per week
        -Antibiotic when doing an instillation to prevent UTI
        -Colace & SmartFiber to treat chronic constipation from meds, Fleet enema as needed
        -Dye Free Benadryl 50 mg at bedtime
        -"Your Pace Yoga: Relieving Pelvic Pain" dvd, walking, treadmill at gym
        -Managing stress= VERY important!
        -Fur therapy: Hugging the cat!

        Comment


        • #5
          I have learned that if I am travelling to always bring an IC Toolkit in my carry on. I think most of us probably bring IC toolkits everywhere.

          Second, I bring my IC cushion - I find this very helpful. I also bring my IC Cookbook. I usually shop at the grocery store for fresh vegetables and only eat those. On the plane, I bring my own snacks - cucumbers, carrots, oatmeal cookies (homemade). I too find water nearly impossible so I know if I stay in Canada where to get what.

          For the plane ride, I always ask to sit by a washroom - preferably at the back of the plane - because at the front of plane - everyone uses the front. I also tell the stewardess if I am in somewhat of a flare. I try to have a stop over somewhere where I can lie down for an hour or two ... it just helps me regroup - sitting for extended periods of time is painful. Oh, and always sit in an aisle seat.

          I hope some of this is helpful.

          Blessings,
          Rebecca

          Current Meds:
          1 Elmiron 100mg 3x a day
          1 Cimetidine 300mg 2x a day
          4 Gabapentin 300mg 3x a day (3600mg)
          1 - 2 Atarax 25mg at bedtime
          1 baclofen 10mg 3x a day as needed
          200mg of Pyridium 3x a day (usually do in cycles - on for a week or two as needed) - I am very careful about this.
          2 belladonna and opium suppositories as needed for pain daily.
          Bladder instillations (Lidocaine, Heparin, & Sodium Bicarbonate)

          I have tried but failed -
          lidocaine instillations, heparin instillations, oxybutynin by mouth also called ditropan, tylenol 3s with coedine, cyclobenzaphrine, Ativan, vesicare, Oxytrol patches worked for 3 to 4 years and then failed, I tried Uracyst and had some success but my urologist felt that it was not successful so we moved on to trying something else. .
          [/I]

          Comment

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