It can be tricky enough to help family members cope with symptoms of sucrose intolerance like gas, bloating, flatulence, and diarrhea from the comfort of your own home, but what happens when you are traveling?
With some careful planning, you and your family can leave home with confidence. Here are five things to take with you when going on a trip:
Snacks and back-up meals.
Grandma, or whoever you are visiting, doesn’t always remember to cook things without sneaking in a little sugar – as she does with her spaghetti sauce. Call a few days before a trip to find out what your host is planning to serve, and then pack a cooler with safe food options to provide for family members who have sucrose intolerance. Volunteer to bring a sucrose-free dessert, such as Peanut Butter Pie, for everyone.
An advance restroom plan.
Especially when you’re going somewhere new, map out the journey and know where you can find restrooms anywhere, fast. A pre-packed car kit with extra toilet paper and hand sanitizer for roadside emergencies comes in handy. If you are traveling with small children, bring a travel potty and extra plastic bags for disposal. If you are flying, make sure to visit the airport restrooms before boarding the flight. You can also have a quiet chat with a flight attendant before the plane takes off in case you need their help to gain timely access to a restroom.
Who cares what you wear to get where you’re going? Travel in comfortable clothes and save the fancier duds for the actual visit. Yoga pants, shorts, or sweatpants with elastic waistbands are less restrictive for sensitive tummies than jeans or dress pants. Change into your visiting clothes at a hotel, restroom, or community center near the destination.
Hot water bottle.
If a family member is suffering from symptoms but managing well enough to go on a trip, bring a hot water bottle for the car. The hot water bottle also comes in handy when staying overnight. In a pinch, you can always make a heating pad or warm rice pack with common household supplies from grandma’s kitchen.
If you or your family members require medication, it’s essential to bring it along. If the medication requires refrigeration, ensure that it is wrapped and placed in an insulated lunchbox or protective compartment, together with a reusable cold pack, and kept protected from heat and light. If you are traveling by plane, make sure medication containers are Transportation Security Administration (TSA) approved, and be ready to declare to the TSA officer that you are traveling with medically-necessary medication. You can present the officer with a TSA notification card or bring a letter from your doctor outlining the medical need. Keep the medication separate from your other belongings before screening begins.