How to Travel with Joint Pain

Most of us love to go on holiday as often as possible.  We drive, fly, hike and explore the wonderful world we live in.  AAA estimates that approximately one hundred and three (103) million Americans will go on holidays every year.  Unfortunately for those with joint pain due to arthritis or injury, travelling can be very physically stressful.  The reality is that travelling can be physically and emotionally stressful for many, so let’s prepare ourselves.  This way we will enjoy the experience that much more!

Joint pain distress caused by arthritis or injury can become inflamed while travelling due to long periods of immobility, often in a cramped environment.  Taking all this into consideration, we have developed a list of suggestions that may help to make your journey one of a lifetime, instead of a nightmare.


If you are planning a trip that involves a long period of time sitting in a car or plane, we suggest that you seek chiropractic care prior to leaving.  If you are planning to be on holidays for an extended period, discuss this with you chiropractor.  Seeking chiropractic care while on holidays is so much simpler if you ask your chiropractor for a copy of your most recent x-rays and a doctor’s report.  This will provide the holiday chiropractor a comprehensive report regarding treatment and eliminate the need for additional x-rays.  Your chiropractor may even be able to refer you to a chiropractor in the area you are traveling.


Regardless of the form of transportation, my advice is the same – avoid alcohol while travelling.  Travelling, particularly flying is very dehydrating, alcohol will exasperate dehydration and leave your body spent.  Drink plenty of water!

Take your cervical pillow with you!  Take any mobility aids that are useful, such as a cane, braces, splints or walkers.  Sometimes in a fit of romantic imaginings we consider not taking our mobility aids, so we can travel more lightly and dance through the streets with the greatest of ease.  This is often a mistake that could really put a dampener on your lovely holiday.

If you are flying to your holiday destination try not to be the first to board the plane.  Walk around the terminal until all the other passengers are seated.  This will reduce the amount of time you are sitting still.

If you are driving, take pit stops approximately every hour.  Walk around, drink more water and stretch your body.  If you are flying, the same advice applies.  Walk around as often as possible.  You can always go into the bathrooms and perform stretching exercises, if you don’t wish to be observed.  Try hard not to be immobile for more than an hour maximum.


If you are taking medication to manage your arthritis or injury, discuss getting a medical report from your medical doctor, explaining the need for the specific medication.  This may help if TSA staff have concerns regarding the specific medication.

Making sure you have enough medication for your trip sounds obvious but what if you misplace your medication for some reason?  It is always prudent to keep a list of medications and doses and a replacement script just in case of an emergency.


Try to travel light, we often go on holidays and bring everything but the kitchen sink.  Take a moment to reflect, how often do you actually use all those clothes, shoes, jackets, dresses, shorts, socks, pants etc. Try taking less and put them all into a suitcase on wheels.  The wheel, such a great invention!


Take your time!  You’re on holiday, so no need to rush from place to place.  Take plenty of deep breaths and enjoy.  Don’t be ashamed to ask for help whether you are taking luggage to your room or taking a taxi rather than walking when you are tired.  Walking is a wonderful exercise but try not to overdue it.


When we are travelling we tend to eat at restaurants or take-out rather than preparing food ourselves.  This is great fun and exposes us to a wonderful selection of foods from all over the world.  The only issue is that we often do not get our daily allocated vegetables and fruits needed for a healthy diet. A whole food supplement like Juice Plus may be the answer to getting the nutrients required for life.


Submit your review

Create your own review

Family Chiropractic Plus
Average rating:  
 0 reviews