We all know IBS sucks. If you have it, you’re probably reading this on the toilet right now. If you don’t, you are probably reading this on the toilet anyway. The constant question of when will it happen and how badly will it hurt haunt the minds of 10 to 15 percent of the population. This constant question has maybe stopped some of you from doing and eating the things you really want. Well I’m hear to tell you not to fear. I have been to many places with this disease, and I would like to share my wisdom with you.
1 The toilet is your friend, not your enemy.
The first step to any travel experience with IBS is know your toilets. You don’t want to be stuck with a toilet situation like this:
I am going to provide some information of course but for more information I have found a site I use to help me in these situations. That will help you get to a toilet like this:
I have highlighted the entire phrase just in case the pain is too bad for you to focus right now. And if you are traveling to South Korea then please check out my post for some other helpful tips. Good news if you are traveling to Stonehenge because they have the comfort of Buckingham Palace and the suction of an airplane bathroom.
Bad news if you are traveling to Southeast Asia though. Because you will have to carry everything you will need with you like: toilet paper, soap, paper towels, baby wipes, Tums (I prefer Rolaids though, they work faster for me, Berry flavor is the best), soothing sounds, the ability to squat for a long period of time, preferably a dress (it is easier for the squatty potty), and finally, a place to put your trash (sometimes there are no trashcans so you will have to find a way to discreetly throw away your toilet paper, because you cannot flush it). I found an image that will help if you have never used a squatty potty before.
Now, when you arrive at a place, check out the toilet situation, subtly, before doing any activities. Like this:
Look for location of toilets, how easy it is to run to these toilets while crouched down, and most importantly, test the toilets. Use the bathroom before you start your activities so you can test the toilet’s strength.
Once you got a feel of the toilet situation you are free to have fun like the normal person you are. Remember don’t eat until you are hungry and never eat too much. Eating when you are not hungry is danger for IBSers. Eating too much could possibly stop your day all together. Also, beer is your friend, the bubbles help your tummy and the alcohol soothes your mind; thus tackling both IBS agitators.
2 Things you need ready
Here is short list of things you will need to have with you at all times:
- A poop playlist
- A book to read, maybe
- Baby wipes
- Rolaids or Tums, whichever you prefer
- IBS prescription medication, if you have it
- Coins, some toilets are pay-to-use if you are traveling
- Maybe some facial spray if you like to freshen up after
3 Keep your mind at ease
The most important thing you need to do is keep your mind at ease. Do yoga. Practice breathing exercises. Drink heavily. Whatever you need to do. I know this is difficult when you are traveling, because stress always comes with travel. So do whatever planning you need to stay calm. Go everywhere super early. Pack too much. Learn every language in the world so you don’t have to worry awkward encounters.
I hope this post has taught you that you cannot prepare for everything, and sometimes shit happens. Please don’t stop traveling and having fun because your body is fighting you. That is not how life works. Sometimes you will shit your pants, and you just have to deal with that. Like my dad always says, “You aren’t an adult until you shit your pants after you turn 18.”