If you or a loved one uses a catheter and are planning a trip for the summer, there are a few things it's important to do before and during travel to ensure the best health and safety.
Always Pack Extra
In the event of a traveling delay or other minor emergency, it's always best to pack extra supplies so you can always be sure to have the necessary supplies to catheterize.
For example, if you'll be gone for one week, pack two weeks' worth of supplies to be on the safe side. Extra supplies to pack include sterilizing wipes and hand sanitizer, lubricant, rubber gloves, and bottled water. If you'll be using disposable catheters during your travels, consider asking your doctor for a paper prescription if you'll be traveling within the States, or for an extra supply to pack just in case.
When there's a change in your schedule, it can be difficult to remember and keep up with your hydration. If you use a catheter, however, hydration is key to avoiding infection and blockage.
If you're traveling to a foreign country where the water may cause intestinal distress, it's important to pack enough water for during your travels as well as your stay in the country. If you cannot pack enough bottled water for your stay, be sure to locate places where safe water can be purchased prior to arriving to ensure that dehydration won't be any trouble during your trip.
Consult with Your Doctor
If this is your first trip with a catheter, it may be a good idea to talk with your doctor about your concerns and ask for any care advice.
Your doctor may suggest a change in catheter type, depending on the length of your trip. If you're not the one using a catheter during the trip, but you will be caring for someone with a catheter, be sure to go over catheterizing instructions with their doctor before leaving, and be sure to understand how to connect the catheter to a drainage bag and how to best deal with any issues, such as improper drainage, that comes up during your travels.
If you or a loved one uses a catheter and is concerned with how catheter use may impact traveling plans, it's important to keep the top three tips in mind. While traveling with a catheter may seem daunting, the process of catheterizing while on-the-go is easy once you've gotten the hang of it. For more information about traveling with urological supplies, talk with your doctor.