I may receive a commission if you purchase something mentioned in this post. See more details here.
You all know me as the bubbly travel writer, on-screen video girl that loves her travel. What you may not know is that I have Asthma. At every doctor’s appointment, I speak up and discuss upcoming trips and possible Asthma triggers associated with the upcoming destination.
Before I asked for help, before I understood what Asthma was, I just carried on, throwing water on the fire so to speak as it occurred. Preventative care is worth its weight in gold.
To get to preventative care, I have had to learn to care for myself, before stepping on to the next plane ride and adventure. The more I know, the better prepared I am to prevent flare-ups. Plain and simple advice but so very valid.
Today I will share with you how managing stress, speaking up, and knowledge about how to use inhalers are critical to my challenges of managing my Asthma as a travel writer.
My Challenges of Managing My Asthma as a Travel Writer
Speaking Up About Challenges in Managing My Asthma
Asthma is not a journey I take alone, rather I have a great team of doctors that have educated me. The first time I had an attack while traveling, I ended up in the ER.
After speaking with the doctor (getting diagnosed) and taking a few breathing treatments, I felt better and was released. However, my Asthma lives on with me.
I travel for a living and sickness is always aboard an airplane and that’s just one thing that brings on my challenges of living with Asthma.
I do have a plan of action, which includes the use of a peak flow meter, stress management, and how to work to prevent infections that trigger my Asthma attacks.
Now no matter where I travel, or when I travel, I know what to do, and what medicines to have with me, just in case of an attack.
Having a protocol it is crucial to my well-being.
Peak Flow Meter &Managing My Asthma as a Travel Writer
Upon arriving at home, I went to see my doctor and we discussed what had happened.
Now, instead of looking at my travel as a challenge, I simply manage my Asthma before reaching the destination and while on destination.
Now to be fair, it’s often easier to say I have a plan, than to actually follow it.
Yes, I know that sounds horrible, but I am a realist and sometimes a trip comes up at the last minute and I just fly out the door, unprepared! Ugh! I am bad.
How? My medical team provided me with a peak flow meter which checks the ability of my lungs to push air out.
This is just a simple tool but it is tell-tale of how well I am managing my Asthma.
No, it’s not medicine, but it truly lets my doctors know if the medicine needs to be adjusted and the crucial info they need to make decisions.
Again, the critical piece in this component has been learning how to properly blow into the peak flow meter (which is not hard) but must be taught.
Stress Management 101 and Managing My Asthma as a Travel Writer
One thing I have had to do is accept is that I have no control over certain things.
For instance, delayed or canceled flights, weather or missed travel appointments when on location (due to destination issues), there’s nothing I can do!
To conquer stress I exercise daily, make sure to get appropriate rest (crucial) and nibble at small meals throughout the day.
Sports help me, but there’s more.
I’ve even taken up tennis, which is often outdoors and fabulous.
Running after tennis balls, and smacking them back and forth is great stress relief, even if they aren’t landing where they should!
Don’t Let It Get At You -Managing My Asthma as a Travel Writer
Further, when situations tense up because life has its own way of creeping up on me, I start doing a ‘Deep Breathing Exercise’ to keep myself calm.
Also, I keep a picture of my kids with me.
The picture is my nerve-calming agent! No matter what the issue is that is stressing me, looking at their smiling little faces makes me just forget and relax.
It’s the bigger picture that frames my life.
Now, when I feel my heart racing or my chest pounding, I calm by using the aforementioned.
None of this happened easily, i took a little while to learn how to compose myself.
Once I did it and do it to keep myself free of Asthma attacks due to stress.
Remember, I am human too, so sometimes I still get riled up, but now I have a toolbox to refer to help me through those moments.
My Prevention Plan and Managing My Asthma as a Travel Writer
How does the saying go? “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure? ”
Personally, I have to be proactive about preventing infections that trigger Asthma. I do this by always getting a flu shot.
Further, my doctor made sure I got a vaccination for pneumonia shot and a few years later another.
He also monitors my blood through testing which tells him how we are doing with the vaccinations.
Last, I monitor myself weekly with the peak flow meter.
When needed, I take my inhalers through a spacer for proper delivery.
The spacer ensures the proper delivery of the medicine into my lungs, it’s fail-safe as I like to say.