Concerns travelling

Hi - I am new to the network although have suffered with IBS D since a trip to Sri Lanka back in 1997 which has got progressively worse over the years. I am heading off on a trip to Australia and New Zealand in a couple of months where I will be travelling from one city to the next speaking at conferences and networking events. This is starting to cause increased stress and panic as I am dreading the journey and the additional travel with this condition. Does anyone have any advice on how best to cope with IBS on long flights? I have flown distances before and relied on Immodium although my stomach still caused problems and I have to rush to the loo. This will be the longest time on a flight and so any advice or support would be much appreciated.

19 Replies

  • Can I ask if you have had your gallbladder out or if you suffer with bile acid I was prescribed with colesevelam tablets I know what it's like having to look for toilets but since I have been on these tablets they have given me 95% of my life back I never thought I would be able to travel anywhere , I suggest you talk with your doctor about these tablets hope this helps if you need any more info only to happy to help, I. really know what my life was like before I researched for a solution to my problem

  • Hi there - thank you so much for your response. I still have my gallbladder but wonder if there could be some link to bile acid which I have read about as a trigger for IBS D. I will speak to my GP so thank you again for your advice :)

  • Your welcome ask for a bile acid test

  • I've done that flight many times. First if all I always try to book a seat near to but not right on top of the toilets. So I can keep my eye on when vacant and zip in relatively speedily. I use OMing to calm and distract myself from any feelings of urges to need the toilet. Have the cool air directed at my face even if I have to have a blanket over the rest of me. I take silicolgel for a day before and during travelling, and reduce to once a day whilst abroad. Ive just been away for two days and have been fine. Without it i barely leave the onboard toilet and suffer a lot of anxiety. Good luck.

  • Thank you so much for your response. I will look to buy silicolgel as I have not yet tried this. :)

  • I really hope it helps. It's given me so much confidence. Good luck

  • Just thought I'd ask if you tried the silicolgel or anything else and if you are feeling better?

  • I was given diazepam to fly which calmed my nerves sufficiently to fly and to sleep on long haul. It's not something I would recommend for any sort of regular use as can be addictive but it certAinly helped.

    I always wait to board until the very last so I can use toilet in airport.

    I did actually take off in the toilet once on a short haul holiday trip although strictly forbidden but I told them the alternative and handed my 'I need the toilet urgently ' card to the crew!

    I found my worst fear is going through the check in section at the airport as you sometimes have a long queue. Last time I had hit half way along and hD to double back in a rush to go to loo and was then fast tracked through by staff after showing them my card and explaining the problem. They were very understanding and helpful and said always to ask them to do that when needed do you could try that if it's a problem for you.

    Good luck

  • Thank you so much for your response. It is nice to know I am not the only one who has these symptons and just reading all the feedback to my post has given me more strength going forward. :)

  • I've travelled that distance a few times. I will take Imodium in the morning of travelling and once that starts to work it calms me. At the airport I go to the toilet as much as I can and when boarding I wait until the end and always go to the toilet just before boarding. Check out where the toilets are on the plane and let the flight attendants know if that will help relax you. I've recently started taking silicolgel and I'm finding that really works so give it a try. I always keep the cold air on me on the plane and just wrap up warm instead and that calms me too. Hope you enjoy your travels.

  • Really useful advice - thank you :)

  • If you want to email me I will give you the info I give my clients to cope with this.

  • That woud be fantastic - yes please.

  • Hi

    I known the anxiety piece makes things worse. I don't have the D part, my issue is vomiting and nausea and anxiety with it.

    What I do is get a scrip for anxiety medication like xanax. Bring a healthy supply of Imodium and watch what you eat 48 hours prior. Start anti anxiety meds before you leave. Drink at least a gallon of water per day 3 days prior. You will be fine, take everything on board that you need and if you have to use the loo- use it. Many others will be in the same situation on a long flight. You cannot help that you have this so just do and be your best.

  • Thank you so much for your response. I am looking to hypnothereapy to help the anxiety and so fingers crossed :)

  • You're welcome--you GOT this! Hypnotherapy and bio feedback are grand. Also, don't be afraid of asking for an anti-anxiety medication. You can cut in half etc. Lorazepam is what I use. I think the real trick is, handling all the stuff prior. Chamomile Tea is also excellent on the belly and is calming.


  • Thank so much for all your great advice and support - much appreciated.

  • I take coidene helps nerves pain and toilet trips! Good luck xo

  • Thank you so much for your response. I will look into this. :)

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