Plane Travel

Share how living with this disease can and does impact your relationships. How do you cope? What questions to you have?
pamhb
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Plane Travel

Postby pamhb » Sun Feb 10, 2008 2:24 pm

I'm not sure if this question belongs in this forum -- how do others cope with extended plane travel (such as overseas). My meds simply don't seem to work on a long plane trip (Mirapex and Clonazapam). I resort to the usual tricks (sitting on the edge of my seat, doing puzzles, jiggling my legs like mad), but it's still pretty uncomfortable. Is there anything that works for you?

As a secondary problem, I also find that my body (or perhaps it's just me), that gets confused as to how to handle jet lag and my meds. When it's an 8 hour time difference, I'm never quite certain as to when I should be taking them!

becat
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Postby becat » Sun Feb 10, 2008 7:02 pm

HI Pam,

I just did my first big oversea travel jig last Nov... and yes, worried I was.

My advice is not easy, but may help.

1. Always set yourself up with a "Bag of Tricks", the idea came from Jill Gunzell the RLS Rebel: Link below.
http://members.cox.net/gunzel/rls.html

2. First class seating helps, but it is rather out there on Price.
Bulk head is the next best seating and you can get a note from your doctor that states you need an aisle seat or bulk head seating for your RLS.
However, use the word Ekbom instead of RLS, it sounds bigger to the airline and more offical. They normally have no clue anyway what it is, so it makes explaining easier.
And we do have rights that can be found, hmmm maybe in a sticky note in New to RLS, if not go to
http://www.rlshelp.org/

I know that website has the law printed.

3. Travel is one time I am allowed extra meds. from my RLS doc.. Not only for sleeping, but for the plane travel as well. I try my best to go to sleep if the trip is over 3 hours. Overseas flight, I found that staying awake is best for the first hour or so, then I medicate and really sleep.
Eye blinders, earplugs or IPOD, headphones, whatever, and I take off my shoes first thing and bring my owe comfy socks to wear only on the plane.

So if you can, call your doc and ask for extra or different meds for travel.

4. We lucked out, our flight got into London very early in the morning and having slept all night while flying, we got up and on to playing asap, when we arrived.
The standard thing to do is start acting and doing, as if your already on the other time zone, while on the plane. Stay awake if possible, if you get there in the morning, afternoon, or night, Hope that makes some sense?

You have to be ready for some jet lag, but sticking to the new time zone makes it easier for sure.

There are also some set of heated (microwave) booties and neck wrap that I found at CVS. I took them on the plane for the booties part, in case my legs started up.

Compression stockings might, MIGHT, help. Again any drug store or such should offer them, and in colors as well. About 15.00 bucks in normal for a good pair.

One time use heating pads are great. I even wrap them up on my legs with ace bandages, however, not next to my skin, just over the first wrap.
Or sit on them, take several and you can extend thier use if you break them up every so often.

Things to do with your hands, games, neddlework ( but you can't take scissors, so precut you threads.) I handbeads evening bags or totes on the plane, it's a thinker for your hands, LOL. :D

There's a start, if I can think of more, I'll add.

Where do you get to go?

Lynne

pamhb
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Postby pamhb » Sun Feb 10, 2008 7:49 pm

I helped my daughter move to Manchester England, and we'd like to go back. What is more worrisome is that my boss keeps threatening to send me to Japan. I might kill the pilot before we get there!

Some great suggestions. I've never tried compression stockings, because I can hardly stand even pantyhose in the evening, but it's worth a shot. What extra meds did your doctor prescribe?

Polar Bear
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Postby Polar Bear » Sun Feb 10, 2008 7:54 pm

Hi Pam, last year I had a 9 hour flight - London to Edmonton Canada. I took normal meds requip and 15mg codeine, not nearly enough. I was most distressed, was very tearful, spent a lot of time at the rear with the cabin crew. But this was only after I felt so bad that I plucked up the courage to be at the back of the plane and mobile - no matter what!! One of my stepsons thought I had panicked and was afraid of the flying.

On the return journey there was no way I was going to go thru it again. I doubled on my requip and took 30 mg codeine an hour before due departure. The plane (we) was returned from the tarmac to the terminal and had to wait an hour to get another plane. I wasn't worried about the plane, all I could think of was that my meds had kicked in, and the effect was being wasted. The meds lasted into the actual flight, and before they could wear off I took a second dose to stay ahead of symptoms. The flight was ok, I couldn't believe it.

So my advice is, take extra meds and stay well ahead of the symptoms, checking with doc if necessary. I still had a little walkabout at the rear of the plane but this was as a preventative. It is impossble to use the aisles of the plane as there is always a trolley blocking it somewhere.

Good luck, Betty
Betty
http://www.willis-ekbom.org/about-rls-wed/publications
Opinions presented by Discussion Board Moderators are personal in nature and do not, in any way, represent the opinion of the RLS Foundation

becat
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Postby becat » Sun Feb 10, 2008 8:55 pm

OMGosh Bestty is right,

get the meds and fight before the symptoms start. That is a great one Betty, thank you. I always forget to say that one out loud.

Pam, in my case my RLS is treated with only one pain med....So I get pain meds and sleep meds. But that is my whole treatment plan anyway, I just get permission and early refill permission from my doc if needed.

It's all doable, I promise.

And if the Boss wants you to go to Japan, say yes, and demand first class for comfort. Tell him you need to be at your best while being there for the company. LOL Take the airline points for yourself.! LOL

Lynne

pamhb
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Postby pamhb » Sun Feb 10, 2008 9:42 pm

I shall consult with my doctor as how much of my clonazapam I can take before passing out :wink: I've always been of the view that managing RLS is like managing pain -- you have stay ahead of the symptoms or you're hooped. However, for flying I've never done anything much more than taken my medications earlier, doubled my dose of clonazapam (which is a pretty low dosage, so doubling it is not huge), and tried very hard to keep my mind engaged. Clearly more is required.

ViewsAskew
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Postby ViewsAskew » Mon Feb 11, 2008 12:52 am

Per the compression...seems some of us love it and some hate it. Like you, I can't stand pantyhose. Compression is not good at all for me...so might not be for you. Try it at home first and test it some evening. I just put them on and I HAVE RLS, lol. Some people love pillows, blankets, even the weight of a dog on their legs. They also tend to be ones who get a lot of benefit from the compression stockings.
Ann - Take what you need, leave the rest

Managing Your RLS

Opinions presented by Discussion Board Moderators are personal in nature and do not, in any way, represent the opinion of the RLS Foundation, and are not medical advice.

Polar Bear
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Postby Polar Bear » Mon Feb 11, 2008 2:00 pm

Yes, all is very personal. I hate the idea of compression hose, I cannot even bear to wear ordinary tights/stockings. :twisted:

Betty
Betty
http://www.willis-ekbom.org/about-rls-wed/publications
Opinions presented by Discussion Board Moderators are personal in nature and do not, in any way, represent the opinion of the RLS Foundation

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SquirmingSusan
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Postby SquirmingSusan » Mon Feb 11, 2008 6:49 pm

I love the compression stockings, but then I am a pillow, heavy blanket, dog on my legs kind of person. LOL. Someday I'm going to spend the extra dollars to buy a pair that's cotton and doesn't itch so much.

But even if you hate compression stockings and they don't help your RLS, it's a great idea to wear them when flying because they reduce the risk of blood clots that like to form while sitting still at high altitude, that make people drop dead after long flights.

I have a thingee called an "Air Gym" or something like that. It's an inflatable thing with two air chambers and you can exercise your legs by pushing the air from one chamber to the other with your feet. They're made for air travel and other occasions where you have to sit for a long time. Probably not long meetings, though, 'cuz they make a bit of noise.
Susan, squirming Image

Opinions presented by Disc. Board Mods are personal in nature and do not, in any way, represent the opinion of the RLS Foundation, and are not medical advice.

pamhb
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Postby pamhb » Tue Feb 12, 2008 12:43 am

SquirmingSusan wrote:
But even if you hate compression stockings and they don't help your RLS, it's a great idea to wear them when flying because they reduce the risk of blood clots that like to form while sitting still at high altitude, that make people drop dead after long flights.



Not that I want to drop dead of a stroke, but if it makes my RLS go crazy, then I'll have to take that chance :D Since I can't stand either pantyhose or my socks in the evening, something tells me that the compression stockings are out. I haven't yet tried the elevation of the legs -- perhaps I can drape my legs over the seat in front of me and see how that works! (On second thought, perhaps I should just stick with doing the leg exercises they recommend. )

becat
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Postby becat » Wed Feb 20, 2008 6:07 am

Pam I thought I'd mention that Jill Gunzel our RLS Rebel has also mentioned and has been helpful to me a couple of tiems about those excercise rubberbands.

They fit in any carryon or purse and you can use the resistance to relieve the strand of sitting.

I have to get a new set, I buy the 3 set ( levels of strenght) and use what is needed.

Just thought I forgot to add that, but Jill has some awesome ideas.
Of course I have to cheat , LOL, somewhat and use the meds I get.....but I'm not in the bathroom crying anymore.

LOL, you still pushing for First class? Go girl, get that first class round trip, so very worth it. Remeber, you need to be fresh and ready to do the best job by the boss! :wink:

hugs
Lynne

tazzer
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Postby tazzer » Wed Feb 20, 2008 8:15 am

since lynne has covered everything including how to build a car out of a stick of chewing gum on your trip :P

i will add a medicine that works fast but you can't take it all the time sinement because of high augmentation rate. which is what i take...but i only take it when my legs are just excrutiating.....just a thought since you said the mirapex and klono were not working....o geez i have gave pill advice now i gotta type that damn disclaimer....i gotta add it my sig...sheesh

disclaimer
i am in no way shape or form a doctor....do not take what comes out of my mouth and onto this keyboard as doctorly advice....discuss all meds with your doc and take your meds as prescribed....i do not pretend to be doctor granny. (remember the beverly hillbillies where she called herself doctor granny and dispensed her tonic which was moonshine.....i wish i had some of her tonic right now......maybe i wouldn't be up at 3friggin am)
:shock: friggin klonopin i might as well eat an m&m
ciao
dee[/i]
I feel like a science project!!!

“The syndrome is so common that it should be known to every physician.”
Dr Karl Ekbom, 1945

becat
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Postby becat » Wed Feb 20, 2008 3:42 pm

lol, Did not Betty helped me.

:D

I'm pushing for first class. At least for the work trip. :wink:

And pam I did fine from Dallas TX straight through to London, with my regular meds for the most part, as the flight over wuld have been my nightitme, by the time I got to England, so not my fudging it there.

I'd be packing to see your little girl.

I'd go with you to Japan to see my boy, if I could.

Dee, Gum? LOL

Lynne

tazzer
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Postby tazzer » Wed Feb 20, 2008 7:37 pm

u know McGyver???? he could build anything with a stick of gum, a paper clip, and bic pen!

:D
I feel like a science project!!!



“The syndrome is so common that it should be known to every physician.”

Dr Karl Ekbom, 1945

pamhb
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Postby pamhb » Thu Jun 19, 2008 12:40 am

Managed an eight hour flight return flight to Florida last month (with a couple of stops along the way, which helped). The morning flight was a breeze -- my legs never bother me on morning flights, and we left at 6:00 am.

Coming back, I threw caution to the winds, and began my meds before I started the flight (4:30 pm). The first leg of the flight was still a big jiggly, but I was able to keep it at bay with Sudoku puzzles. Took second dose for second leg of flight, and legs began to calm down a bit. Still awake enough to do puzzles. Third leg of the flight, I had two seats to myself (oh bliss!), so was able to stretch my legs and nap a bit. Running to catch the next plane between flights didn't hurt either!

Japan is now cancelled, and I was able to see my daughter in Florida. No flights in the immediate future, so all is well. I shall experiment with the bands, though, when my legs are acting up at home, and see if it helps!


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