Tips to Prepare for Traveling with Irritable Bowel Syndrome Traveling with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) can make even a simple trip worrisome. The syndrome, which causes abdominal pain, diarrhea and cramps, can often be unpredictable. Planning ahead can help you avoid common problems. Talk to your doctor before you go: Call your doctor and make sure she or he has any tips or medications covered while you are traveling. Make sure to stock up before your trip if you need a prescription refill or and talk to your doctor about tips to keep your symptoms at bay before starting your trip. Stockpile supplies: Always take enough medicine for your entire trip and a few days extra and put it in your carry-on bag — not in your checked bag, in case it gets lost. Consider packing flushable wipes and a change of clothes as a precaution. Keep your normal habits while on your trip: Always follow the same eating habits they keep at home, with one exception: Drink only sanitized or bottled water when abroad. Even when brushing your teeth, make sure you’re brushing with bottled water to avoid the risk of using un-sanitized water. Know the landscape: Simple preventive research helps lessen anxiety when traveling with IBS. Find out the bathroom location before arriving at each destination. You can also ease your journey by making sure your seat on the plane, train or bus carrier is near the restroom. If taking a road trip, log the rest stop locations along the way. Have a great trip, don’t worry, and be prepared!
Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a common disorder that affects your large intestine or colon. IBS commonly causes cramping, abdominal pain, bloating, gas, diarrhea and constipation. IBS is a chronic condition that more often than not will need to be managed long term. Even though signs and symptoms are uncomfortable, IBS, unlike ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease, which are forms of inflammatory bowel disease, doesn't cause changes in bowel tissue or increase your risk of colorectal cancer. Only a small number of people with irritable bowel syndrome have severe signs and symptoms. Some people can control their symptoms by managing diet, lifestyle and stress. Others will need medication and counseling. Contact your doctor if you would like more information about IBS.