Planning a trip abroad?
Whether you’re travelling afar for business or pleasure, the long-haul travel involved can be a daunting prospect. But with a little preparation you can enjoy a comfortable journey, and prevent the health risks associated with travel.
At Fleet Street Clinic, we regularly see frequent travellers for travel health-related consultations and vaccinations. Our travel experts have compiled some tips to ensure you are in great shape throughout your travels, starting with a healthy outbound flight:
Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT)
Travelling on long-haul flights with extended periods of immobility can leave you at an increased risk of DVT (blood clots), especially if you have any pre-existing conditions.
To prevent DVT during your flight:
- Wear loose comfortable clothes.
- Keep moving during the flight – get up regularly to walk around the cabin to aid circulation.
- Keep hydrated by drinking plenty of water- drink at least one cup of water for every hour spent in the air.
- Avoid alcoholic and caffeinated drinks.
- Wear compression socks which apply gentle pressure to the ankle to help with blood flow.
Air in the plane’s cabin is recirculated, which results in a loss of moisture. This can cause dry skin, lips, and eyes.
To prevent dehydration:
- Contact lens wearers should remove lenses prior to travel and wear spectacles to avoid dry eyes and prevent damage to the cornea.
- Dry skin should be moisturised, and if nasal irritation occurs, a saline spray can be used.
- Keep hydrated – don’t be afraid to ask cabin staff for water outside of mealtimes.
Travel / Motion Sickness
Motion sickness occurs when there is confusion between what the eyes see, and what the inner ear senses. With turbulence, cramped spaces and lack of fresh air, susceptible travellers can suffer.
To minimise the risk of travel sickness:
- Keep hydrated.
- Avoid large meals prior to and during the flight.
- Request a seat near the front wing – the most stable part of the plane.
- Use preventative medication such as Cinnarizine (to be taken 2 hours prior to boarding the aircraft).
Flying can leave you feeling sleep deprived and jet lagged.
To reduce avoidable risks and arrive at your destination in good shape, here’s how you can prevent or combat the effects:
- Avoid night-time flights when possible – otherwise make sure you build a rest period into your schedule on arrival.
- Give your body clock clues as to your new time zone – adjust your watch, observe local mealtimes and bedtimes.
- Use melatonin and timed exposure to bright light – talk to your doctor or consult a specialist travel clinic about using medication to aid both sleeplessness and wakefulness.
- Use our Jet Lag Calculator – whether you’re using timed exposure to bright light, melatonin, both or none of these methods, our calculator can calculate timings based on your exact travel details.
Book An Appointment
If you’re taking a long-haul flight and need travel vaccines or advice, you can book an appointment online to ensure a smooth transit to your destination.
Bali ranks as one of the most popular destinations to visit in Asia. It is crowned as the jewel of the Pacific ocean, with its white powder beaches, tropical waters and lush green rain forests. However, those who seek out this tropical paradise will need to spend an average of 18 hours travel time to reach the island, and will need to take more than one flight.
Be aware, long haul flying can increase the risk of a Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT). A DVT can form in the legs when a person is immobile – usually in a confined space for a long period of time. The longer the period of immobility, the greater the risk of developing a DVT. It is also worth noting that a DVT can break off and travel through the veins to other parts of the body such as the lungs where it can be life threatening, while certain medications and medical conditions can increase an individuals chance of developing a DVT.
- Ensure you stay mobile. Get up regularly, and walk around the plane to keep your circulation going.
- Do exercises that help your calf muscles contract in order to aid circulation.
- Keep hydrated by drinking plenty of non-caffeinated and non-alcoholic beverages.
- Wear loose and comfortable clothes to prevent any physical restrictions.
- Consider wearing compression flight stockings.
The Fleet Street Clinic stock compression stockings, travel vaccines and medical travel kits. Our experience team of travel nurses can help advise with any queries or more information on Bali.
Travellers should also be up to date with vaccinations against Diphtheria, Tetanus and Polio, Hepatitis A and Typhoid. Vaccinations against Japanese Encephalitis, Rabies and Hepatitis B should also be considered.
FLEET STREET TRAVEL CLINIC
Book your travel appointment today
By Anna Chapman | Travel Nurse | July 2018