Dysphagia is a disorder that affects your whole life. You have to plan accordingly, and if you aren’t prepared, you might be severely limited in what you can do. For example, not being able to feed yourself properly during your travels can be a serious problem, and finding food for people who have dysphagia is not always easy. This is why you need to plan well in advance if you want to enjoy yourself to the fullest. Here are some tips on traveling while suffering from dysphagia.
Know Which Foods Are Permitted by the TSA
You first need to know which foods are permitted by the TSA in flights. You will probably have no choice but to bring food with you, so this is very important to know so that it’s not confiscated before you board the flight. The TSA has a rule concerning the amount of liquid you can bring with you, so if you bring liquid preparations, know what the procedure will be. The TSA allows people to go over the limit if it’s for medical reasons. You will have to notify the TSA agent before the screening and take items out of their casing for them to be screened.
Have Your Documentation Ready
You also should go to the TSA’s website and print out a copy of their notification card for people with disabilities. You’ll be able to show it to the agent and it will facilitate the whole screening process. Also, you should consider getting documentation from your doctor, though it’s not mandatory. The TSA’s guidelines simply say that you should notify the agent of special items, but it’s better to have all the documentation you need to make things easier.
Carry-on meals will be a lifesaver when traveling. You might not be able to get pureed food at the airport or on the flight, and you don’t know how long you may have to wait. Flights get delayed all the time, so come prepared. We would suggest that you invest in a cooler and have a few cold and frozen meals with you. Most airports have microwaves and you can also ask restaurants if they will heat your food for you. Most will not have an issue with this. Also, note that most won’t have an issue with someone bringing their own food in if they have a special condition and are with someone else who is ordering food.
Stock Up on the Essentials
When you get to your destination, you don’t want to be looking for the nearest shop or restaurant and deciding then that your food options are limited. So, pack some essentials in your check-in luggage, such as SimplyThick. This is a thickener that comes in convenient packets and can thicken any liquid in seconds with any utensil. You can add more or less depending on the consistency you’re looking for. Make sure that you have enough with you and always keep a pack or two wherever you go.
These are just a few simple tips you should follow if you’re traveling with dysphagia. Don’t hesitate to ask your doctor if you need more advice.