Surviving a flight with Lymphoedema

Hi Beautifuls!

It’s that time of year again where everyone is booking or prepping for a holiday. As a Lymphie, this is SO STRESSFUL! Amiright!? I’ve done my fair share of travelling so have put together my list of tips and tricks to survive a flight regardless of whether it’s 2 hours or 12!

1. Stand up!! 

Regardless of flight time (short or long haul) keep moving those feet and limbs! Your lymphatic system is worked by your muscles which means if you aren’t moving, neither is your lymphatic fluid.

2. Book an aisle seat! 

Partly because of the reason above… it’s easier to get up and move about if you have an aisle seat and also you won’t annoy people asking to move in and out of your seat. Another advantage is that you can stretch your limbs into the aisle for comfort.

3. Double up

Double up on your stockings. The atmospheric pressure plays havoc with my system so I find doubling up on compression halves my swelling. I’d apply moisturiser before garments go on to lessen the irritation felt behind the knee after long periods of sitting down! I sometimes carry my lower half of my farrow wrap to encourage compression if on a long haul flight… depends on my luggage allowance!

4. Hell yeah H2O

I’ll happily have a glass of fizz before boarding my flight and coffee when up in the air… however, I’m aware this isn’t the best call for my Lymphie system. When in the air constantly drink water. Yep, an excuse to get up and walk to the loo but also it aids your system and the feeling of jet lag when you land. Double positives!!

5. Wear comfortable clothing 

There’s nothing worse than the feeling of your feet or limbs getting trapped and shoes etc digging in to your limbs. I always wear shoes that are extendable with laces, I’ll loosen my shoes as soon as I get on board. I’d recommend loose clothing on long flights rather than fitting or constricting clothing. On short haul flights I love a pair of fitness leggings and trainers as neither constrict your movement or your limbs. Comfort is key, especially choosing fabrics. Certain fabrics feel constricting which is no fun!

6. Travel pillows

If you can sleep on the flight, do it! My limb always feels better if I’ve managed a nap or 2 on board… especially if it’s a night flight. Your limb is used to a routine, try to keep to it as much as possible. Always carry a travel pillow… it also doubles up as a soft foot rest. If you don’t want the hassle of carrying a travel pillow, a rolled up hoodie or jumper can also work well!! If you have the funds available, upgrade to premium or business class for extra room (or a lie flat bed if on an A380 or 777-300).

7. Be sensible

Nobody knows your limb better than you. If that means putting your feet up for 24 hours before and after your flight then do it. If it means catching a connecting flight instead of going the full 15 hour flight in one sitting, then do it. Don’t feel pressured into something silly that will cause havoc for your limb!!

8. Take a larger item of carry on

Don’t be afraid to take a large piece of hand luggage if your ticket allows. I always include an extra pair of shoes-flip flops, a scarf, a small pot of moisturiser, lip balm, anti bacterial wipes (I wipe down ALL surfaces on and around my seat; infections are no fun for a Lymphie), a pair of socks, a hoodie or cover up, my own ear phones, sunglasses, a flapjack or protein bars and a large bottle or 3 of water… to aid my body on my journey. By the way… speaking of infection… NEVER WALK BARE FOOT IN THE AISLES OR INTO THE BATHROOM ON BOARD!

9. Moisturise, Moisturiser, Moisturised

There’s no worse feeling than dry legs, especially when 40,000ft In the clouds! Ensure you moisturise before you get on board (those loos aren’t the most spacious for moisturising after take off!) with a heavy duty moisturiser. I love Legology for when I fly. It’s heaped with loving ingredients to combat the heavy feeling when flying!

Here’s to healthy and happy travels!

Lots of Love

L xoxox

Copyright Lauren Toner 2011-2018

Reposted with edited name from Survive a flight with LE-2017

2 thoughts on “Surviving a flight with Lymphoedema

    • It’s a cosmetic moisturiser developed by former Telegraph Beauty Editor Kate Shapland. It’s not a medical moisturiser. http://www.Legology.co.uk sells the moisturiser. It’s also available on British Airways flights (I know of cabin crew that use this during flights too). I believe shipping to be worldwide, but please check in the FAQs page! X

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