Friday, September 20, 2013

Traveling with Fibromyalgia

Several of my fibro buddies on FB have asked me how I'm faring under the stress of traveling and not being in my usual "home".  To them I say - its been a bit of a struggle at times, but anything is possible when you are a stubborn Hungarian!

Before we left on this trip, I purchased a memory foam mattress topper and a pillow top mattress topper and added them to the top of the mattress in the camper, which is a good Serta.

I brought my walker along, as well as a cane.  When in large places that require a lot of standing around, like at the Holocaust Museum, we rented a wheelchair and Noel pushed me, or I scooted along using my legs, but remained sitting down.

I have a "bed buddy", one of those "bean bag" type things that you can heat in the microwave.  I also have a heating pad and ice packs.  I use earplugs at night if its noisy, and a sleep mask to block out light if its too bright.

In the truck, Noel covered the passenger seat with a 1/2" memory foam pad, so that has really helped provide extra cushion, and I have a small pillow in there that I use to pad any pressure points, like my elbow on the arm rest.

We've tried to stagger the days so we drive one day, do a quiet activity like the pool or the beach one day, then an active day, so I always have time to recover from the active days.

When I know we are going to do a lot of walking on concrete, I wear my Z-Coil shoes, which really take a lot of the pressure off my back.  If we are hiking, I wear my gym shoes.

My pain management doctor would not prescribe the pain patches I am on for more than three months at a time (called Butrans), so for months I have been using them for 8 days instead of 7 so that I have an extra supply to take me out for several months.  When I run out, I will try to go without them, but if I find I can't, I guess I'll either have to find a local doctor, or fly back to Ohio for a few days.

I also can take Norco (like Vicoden) for breakthrough pain, and I certainly have needed it more than usual since being on this trip.

So all in all, its been manageable, and there have been a few times that we cut a day short or missed some of the things I had wanted to see or do because I was either too exhausted, had too much pain, or both.

Any questions?  I'm happy to share my tips of RV living with chronic pain, RV living in general, fibromyalgia in general, or whatever else you want to ask!

1 comment:

Sherri Mash said...

Anna, Have you used magnets? I got a lot of help from Nikken magnets. The credit card size ones on my wrist, the back magnet and I wore the shoe magnets for a year. My daughter would put the credit card size magnet on her head when she would get a headach and it would go away. Just wondering.