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Traveling with Osteoporosis

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Traveling with OsteoporosisThere may be a greater risk when traveling with some chronic conditions and this can also apply to osteoporosis. Unlike with circulation problems, osteoporosis may not pose a danger just by sitting for long periods of time on a flight. Rather it is the change in physical activities and unusual behavior when one is traveling that may hold greater risks for osteoporosis patients.

Can a person with osteoporosis travel?

A person with osteoporosis should not be restricted from traveling locally or abroad. Air, road or sea travel does not hold any major risks for travelers. However, it is imperative to take additional precautions to prevent falls and injuries as far as possible as the bones can be easily fractured.

This is especially a consideration with sea travel where rocky seas and slippery decks are more likely to lead to a fall. With road and air travel a person is seated for most of the time and apart from the possibility of a crash, there is no need for osteoporosis patients to be apprehensive about these modes of travel.

Activities and Osteoporosis Dangers when Traveling

The risk to osteoporosis patients lies in the activities when traveling and not the mode of travel itself. It is not uncommon for a person to partake in sports and liquor when on vacation and accidents may arise. Sports, particularly when one is not accustomed to it, can lead to falls and injuries. Liquor dulls the senses and impairs the balance possibly leading to falls particularly in a drunken stupor. Fractures are therefore more likely to arise in these instances.

However, even regular activities like walking around can hold risks when away from home. The terrain may be unfamiliar and the infrastructure such that surfaces may not be smooth and safe for pedestrians. This increases the risks of falls. Osteoporosis patients who are using medical walkers or walking sticks are at a greater risk in these instances especially when surfaces are uneven. However, these assistive devices should not be discarded when in unfamiliar territory.

Tips for Traveling Safely with Osteoporosis

Avoiding circumstances that can increase the risk of falls and injuries when traveling is more a matter of common sense. It depends on the individual case as well. An osteoporosis patient with a recent fracture should not travel unnecessarily, especially long distances away from home. Even with the convenience of a wheelchair, long distance traveling should be avoided by osteoporosis patients with fractures that are healing or recently healed.

Some other travel tips that are worth noting for osteoporosis patients without fractures.

  • Try visiting familiar places with good infrastructure like well maintained side walks and roads.
  • Always use appropriate footwear with non-slip soles.
  • Sporting activities should be kept to a minimum especially high risk activities.
  • Moderate alcohol intake and ask for assistance when intoxicated.
  • Travel with known people, like family or friends, who can assist where necessary.
  • Avoid high risk situations – victims of even petty crime can sustain injuries with falls.
  • Use medical walkers and walking sticks at all times if unstable on the feet.

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