Having a broken arm while going around places can be quite uncomfortable. The cast feels like excess baggage and limits your movement.
But you can still make traveling with a broken arm bearable. Here’s how:
- Keep Your Cast On
This tip is a no-brainer. As long as your fracture is still healing, you must always wear your arm in a cast. Casts keep the broken limb from excessive movement, which could impede the bone from recovering correctly. When you’re traveling, you’re expected to move around a lot. Thus, keeping the cast on is vital to maintain your arm’s position and protect the affected area from light to medium impact.
The healing process of fractures varies from person to person and depends on the severity. Generally, it’s around six to eight weeks. During that time, your arm may swell, which is normal. However, you might feel discomfort while wearing your cast. Hence, before your trip, ensure that your cast fits appropriately and doesn’t restrict your arm’s blood flow. Go for a lightweight, flexible, and durable cast; you can find it here or from other sources.
By wearing a proper arm cast throughout your travels, you’ll have less time cringing in pain and more time enjoying your trip.
- Consult Your Doctor Regularly
If you’re traveling with a broken arm, it means your doctor gave you the go-ahead. It also means significant time may have passed since the fracture happened. However, even if you’re allowed to travel in your condition, you must continue communicating with the physician who handled your broken arm. Unexpected things could happen while traveling that might affect your fracture.
For example, you suddenly run out of your prescribed pain medication during the trip or lose it somewhere. Contact your doctor when this happens. You need to ask if your prescription medicines are available in the country you’re in. If not, ask whether you’re allowed to take similar over-the-counter drugs with a different name.
So, no matter where you are in the world, you must have your doctor’s contact information, including their email, in case of emergency. Don’t hesitate to call your doctor as soon as you feel something’s wrong.
- Inform Your Hosts
Whether you plan to stay at a hotel or a B&B, the staff or hosts must know about your situation, so give them a call beforehand. They may have special services to make your stay more comfortable. For instance, a B&B could have an ice maker on hand if your arm begins to swell. A hotel can also provide extra pillows for elevation if you need them.
Moreover, it will help to choose the right hotel or B&B with the amenities you need, such as a room equipped with a microwave that you can use for moist heat application to treat stiff fingers. Accessibility to public transport is important as well. So, even if you’re held back with an arm sling, you can still move around comfortably and relish every moment of your stay.
- Always Ask For Help
You might feel a little embarrassed to seek assistance for the simplest of tasks, especially when in another state or country. But you shouldn’t be since your condition makes it risky to do excessive movement or lift heavy objects.
No matter what your pain threshold is, avoid lifting your bags and suitcases by yourself. Flight attendants and hotel staff are trained to assist passengers and guests. In addition, regular people understand when a person isn’t able to do much physically while nursing a broken arm. Therefore, don’t be shy or afraid to reach out. Most people would gladly lend a helping hand.
- Seek Medical Attention When Needed
As mentioned previously, fractured limbs tend to swell. Your broken arm may swell more during travel, so you must treat it as soon as you arrive at your accommodation. It’s not safe to leave it alone and wait for the swelling to subside. Swollen arms, hands, and fingers are painful and may limit your movement significantly. Furthermore, swelling in your hands and fingers might even lead to permanent joint contractures.
Take a quick break when you feel pain in your swollen hand or arm. Find a shaded spot somewhere that isn’t crowded. Relieve the swelling with a cold pack. If the pain becomes unbearable, seek medical attention immediately.
Once you’re feeling better, consider getting an edema glove or compression garments. These tools can help address swelling and stabilize your limb as you move. You can then continue exploring around comfortably while wearing them.
A broken arm shouldn’t mark the end of what would be a perfect vacation. You just need to take precautions and come up with a plan to ensure your arm heals properly.