Ive committed to a big trip in March and am getting scared

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Veteran Member

Date Joined May 2005
Total Posts : 4219
   Posted 9/19/2007 5:02 PM (GMT -7)   
I know I always encourage every one else to go and not be held back by their disease.  But in addition to CD I am very very afraid of flying.  I do fly, but am miserable.  I make myself sick from fear (which is not good for the CD) and will shake and sometimes cry.  Its embarassing.  Ive learned that Im more afraid of the lack of control then I actually am of crashing and dying.  Well my hubby isn't a good flyer either and I feed off of his anxieties too.  I do ok when Im w/ calm people who calm me down.  Anyway we are flying to Georgia in December and I have signed up to speak w/ my school's therapist and my doctor also said she would give me medication.  I am not too worried about that trip.  It is my dream trip that scares the poop out of me, literally.  My husband grew up in Singapore and for my spring break he is taking me to Phuket, Thailand (where the plane just crashed) and to Singapore to see where he lived.  I am soooooo happy and excited but petrified at the same time.  I get anxiety just thinking about the TWENTY TWO hours on a plane.  I know we have some layovers so it wont be exactly that long but I just have to relinquish all my control.  I am limited to what I can bring on the plane.  What if I cant eat the food? What if I feel sick the whole time?  What about when we land in Phuket and have to take a 20 minute taxi ride to our hotel when our driver may not speak English.  I went to therapy a couple summers ago to get my anxiety associated with this disease under control.  It really helped.  But I still get lots of anxiety when I am entering unknowns.  And for me this is a huge unknown.  Its not like going to a wedding where I can call ahead and find out where the bathrooms are.  My husband told the travel agent I need an aisle seat.  I am also going to call the airline when we get our tickets and confirm this.  I am afraid of the long waits on tarmacs you see on TV.  The whole time your thinking you could take off at anytime and the plane is taxi-ing so you are not allowed to get up and walk around.  But then it really takes hours.  I cant go that long w/o the bathroom.  I guess I can tell the flight attendants about my issue but will they even care? Oy.  If I can get the anxiety under control I am sure I will be totally fine.  But between the going to a new place, a ridiculously long flight, fear of flying, and crohns I need all of your help.  Remind me of all of that good advice I give everyone else.  Share your coping mechanisms.  Its only 7 days of my life but I really want to enjoy it.  (PS: we also have travel insurance so if something horrable happens we can get our money back but I would need to be hospitalized or something so its not like I can use it as an excuse if I chicken out.)
25 Year old married female.  Diagnosed w/ CD 2 years ago, IBS for over 10 years before that, which was probably the CD.
I started getting a ton of junkmail after putting my myspace profile link on here.  Im taking it off but if you want to contact me just email me and Ill give you a link to my myspace.  Sorry!

gemini kiwi
Veteran Member

Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 1136
   Posted 9/19/2007 5:17 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Fitzy,
I can only suggest some "chill Pills' to get you through the ordeal of flying. First time my SIL came out to NZ with her husband from the UK they mentioned their wasn't much on the menu they could have as they were Vegetarians, second time they came out they had let the airline know their dietary requirements and they were able to cater to their needs.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 3763
   Posted 9/19/2007 5:33 PM (GMT -7)   
Ok, so I can't help with the anxiety, but maybe your doctor can give you some nice little pills that might make it easier.

As far as the traveling with CD. I have the big D and it is a huge concern for me when traveling for all the reasons you stated. I'm assuming you are dealing with D and not C so disregard everything if I am wrong. Depending on how severely you are affected there are a number of things you can do. Try immodium OTC. I take up to 8 a day on a regular basis, because I won't take Questran unless I have to travel. I do have Questran that I take when I have to travel, but I have bile salt issues. Probably can't get a Rx for that if you don't have bile salt issues. You might be able to get some Lomitol (sp?) that would make traveling easier. Also, I started taking Xifaxan about a year ago and it made a huge difference in the number of trips to the bathroom a day. basically cut my trips in half. It is an antibiotic for travelers D that is used off label for CD. You might be able to try that even for a month or two just as some added insurance while out of the country.
My last suggestions, while not pretty, would give you a little security. Wear some loose clothing with adult diapers underneath. That way, if the worst did happen, at least your clothes would stay clean until you could get to the bathroom.

Oh and if possible, I would try the meds in advance. You don't want to find out that lomitol stops you up for days and makes you miserable on the trip of your dreams. Better to find out at home so that you can play with the dosages to find a happy medium. Just enough for safety and comfort.

And congratulations on taking the trip of your dreams!

CD 19 years offically, 29 unofficially. 3 resections '93, '95 '97
Symptoms constantly but all tests show only minor ulcerations. Currently having multiple episodes of gastritis with no known cause.

Prednisone, 6MP,Prevacid, B12 shots, Bentyl, Xifaxan.....

Veteran Member

Date Joined May 2005
Total Posts : 4219
   Posted 9/19/2007 5:56 PM (GMT -7)   
Im not even sure what I would tell the airline I could eat.  Im sure they will have water juice and ginger ale on board so Im not going to worry about the liquid rule.  I can pack protein bars and instant cup of soup and just get hot water for tea to make my soup if I cant eat what they have.  I could bring some bread or something too.  Im not sure about customs requirements and food though.  As long as it doesnt enter the other country it should be ok. Whatever I dont eat I will just have to junk.  We are flying Singapore Air though we dont know what our domestic flights will be yet.  Singapore air is famous for great service (and food) and they have lots of sections for people w/ medical issues on their websites including special meals you can request (including lactose free, gluten free, or low fiber) Im sure Ill find something I can do.  What I can and cant eat though is all over the board and I hate to request one thing and have it be even worse.  I might just take my chances and bring snacks.  Im also going to call the airline at some point too to make sure I have a seat where I cant get blocked in by the juice cart.  I flew a domestic flight once where the only bathrooms were in the rear of the plane and I was in the first coach aisle.  I had to go and couldnt get back so I had to go into first class.  Luckily they let me.  Ok, starting to calm down.  I know how to ask for what I want and get what I need.  I just feel like it can be annoying for my husband sometimes when I am being so particular.  And Zanne, I do have D but not as bad as yours sounds.  I do not have it all the time but it comes on unexpectedly but almost always in stressful situations.  Immodium does wonders for me too and I know I can rely on that and my antispasmodic.  I might even bring my microwaveable heating pad since most planes have microwaves.  If I end up in a ton of pain Im sure I can get someone to heat it up.  Im also a little nervous about finding food I can eat in Phuket but since it is a tourist resort my husband assures me there is a wide variety.  Plus I love love love asian food and there should be no shortage of rice in Singapore. 
25 Year old married female.  Diagnosed w/ CD 2 years ago, IBS for over 10 years before that, which was probably the CD.
I started getting a ton of junkmail after putting my myspace profile link on here.  Im taking it off but if you want to contact me just email me and Ill give you a link to my myspace.  Sorry!

Regular Member

Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 254
   Posted 9/20/2007 12:30 AM (GMT -7)   
Please try to enjoy it and don't let your fears overcome the excitement!!!  Just think that statistically (sp?) speaking there are more chances that you get hit by a car when you are crossing the road, than crashing with a plane.  Now, do you honestly think that something bad will happen every time you cross the street?  I know that what we watch in the news really affects us, because we think that we could have been in their position, but on the other hand, if we were afraid to travel or cross the street we would stay home forever and not enjoy life.  everyone of us could have an accident even when we are home, so don't panic and try to enjoy life and your vacations!!
I would suggest to take something before you board, and then on the plane, take deep breaths, take a really nice book with you, or listen to music so you don't have to listen to all the sounds the plane makes.

Elite Member

Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 14995
   Posted 9/20/2007 6:43 AM (GMT -7)   
Boy Fitzy you sound exactly like me. My husband is from Mexico and his sister still lives in Guadalajara, Mex and we want to go see her. But I am so worried about all the same things you are, I am too afraid to book a trip. I think Zanne gave some good advice, if you suffer from D, take Immodium or the Lomitil. You might ask your doc for a RX for something like Xanax or Valium to take before you board the plane. I take Valium when I feel like I am about to get sick and it really chills me out and helps to keep my anxiety down. As for food I would try to eat simple things like rice, cup of soups etc. I have the same fears about the food as you do. Use only bottled water or gatorade. Use the bottled water to even brush your teeth with. And I truly hope all your fears are for nothing and you come back and tell us what a good time you had.
Been living with Crohn's Disease for 32 years.  Currently on Asacol, Prilosec 60 mg, Estrace, Prinivil, Diltiazem, Percoset prn for pain and Calcium.  Resections in 2002 and 2005.  Recently diagnosed with Fibromyalgia and doing tests to see if I have Inflammatory Arthritis or AS.

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