Planning a trip away when you have IBS can be a huge challenge, not to mention being very stressful. Here are our top travel tips to help you feel more confident and comfortable travelling this summer.

Prepare in advance
Most people would agree that they don’t look forward to packing, but it still has to be done. If you start early, the chances are you’ll feel more in control and avoid forgetting the most important items. Go through your IBS emergency kit supplies and see if there are items you might need to get before going away. The IBS Network has a summer travel pack to help you better manage your IBS this holiday season. The pack includes a wellness diary; Bimuno Travelaid, a Can’t Wait Card including international travel card, and a pack of five coin towels. The pack is just £14 (worth £26.19) and is available from the online shop.

Plan meal and snacks
Skipping meals to avoid going to the toilet can make your IBS worse. Taking a few snacks and water with you can help you manage your symptoms better until you can eat a proper meal. If you are travelling to a country where you haven’t been before and want to try the local cuisine – do your research beforehand. If you are travelling to a country where you don’t speak the language, it’s very helpful to create a list of translations for trigger foods to avoid.

Keep your mind busy
Travelling can be stressful by itself without having to deal with IBS. Occupy your mind with reading, watching a film, or doing a puzzle to make the time go faster and distract yourself. If you’re more relaxed your less likely to experience IBS symptoms.

Keep a wellbeing diary
Write down what you’re eating and how you’re feeling. Our 12-week wellness diary is designed to help you better understand your symptoms and triggers.

Don’t forget your go-to treatment
If you have a medication that helps you calm your symptoms during a flare up, be sure to pack it. That way, you’ll be prepared and hopefully better able to cope if you have a flare up. Remember to keep your medication in its original packaging should customs want to check them.

Drink plenty of water
It’s easy to forget to drink water when you’re travelling or seeing the sights, but it’s important, especially if you have IBS-C. Hot weather can also increase the risk of dehydration, so be sure to drink extra fluids.

Learn to meditate
Meditation is a term used for a variety of techniques that involve focusing your attention on the here and now. It induces calm and relaxation, removing stress and anxiety, to help you better cope with the day-to-day stress of living with IBS. Find out more in The IBS Network’s self-care programme.

Once you’ve done all the packing and preparation, sit back, relax and enjoy yourself the best you possibly can.

For more information or to order your summer travel pack visit The IBS Network website.