Jump to content
Heather Mills - Amputee Forum
SteveAZ

My first overnight trip!

Recommended Posts

I've already flown since my BKA and have the general gist of dealing with the airport and airplanes, etc. I'm just getting ready for a trip to Canada this weekend and this will be my first overnights away from home. I'm only going for a three day trip so no matter what, it won't be that bad.

The parts that give me the most apprehension are the nighttime trips to the loo and showering. If the bed is close enough to the loo, then I can just hop and be happy; if not, I'll just put the leg on and deal with it that way.

Some folks in the intro section discussed some products to cover up the prosthetic while in the shower, but to me, that seems to defeat some of the primary reasons for taking the shower - to thoroughly clean and dry the residual limb. At least one of the products was latex and that's a big no-no for me too. Regardless, since I'm traveling this weekend, I don't really have time to get the products. So, if there is any surface to sit on, I'll sit on it. If not, I'll stand on the good leg. I guess. We'll see.

Anyway, if anyone has suggestions, I'm all ears!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Anyway, if anyone has suggestions, I'm all ears!

Many hotels have shower chairs. It doesn't hurt to ask when booking a trip. A couple of companies make travel crutches as well. They fold up and are packable. I bought a cheap pair at WalMart...they are like regular underarm crutches but they fold in half. I also have a foldable shower chair for those trips I take to campgrounds.

Have a great trip!

Lorri

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I travel a lot and leave crutches at home

when in a hotel I prepare the shower by putting the head on the floor and getting the temp right (if I need to stand to reach the controls)

I take leg off in the bedroom and bottom shuffle to the shower and wash seated. I also try and get a room witha bath if available.

A bathroom with a stool is useful.

A urine bottle is worth taking with to save wandering around in the dark

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Anyway, if anyone has suggestions, I'm all ears!

Many hotels have shower chairs. It doesn't hurt to ask when booking a trip. A couple of companies make travel crutches as well. They fold up and are packable. I bought a cheap pair at WalMart...they are like regular underarm crutches but they fold in half. I also have a foldable shower chair for those trips I take to campgrounds.

Have a great trip!

Lorri

Hi Lorri,

Did you get those crutches recently? They sound very interesting. I'd love to know more.

I do have a pair of those millenium travel crutches, and they fit in my suitcase, but I'm not wild about them. My shower chair also fits in my suitcase. (big suitcase, lol) My leg, being above knee with seal-in liner, is too complicated for me to try to get on and off during the night, so I use crutches. I also travel with my own hand held shower thingie and tool to remove the one that's there. Needless to say I don't travel too light, but it does work. :P

Susan

YEA I missed the forum...hopefully all bugs will be fixed soon!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I appreciate the comments...

I'm used to traveling a lot and have gotten very accustomed to traveling very light. For something that's just a night or two like this trip, I just plan on traveling as light as I would have with maybe the only exception that I bring a collapsible walking stick/cane for the airport; it helps with the long walks through the terminal (I started walking unassisted in March) and since I still go ahead and pre-board, it helps to make it look like I have a good reason. 81647499-O.gif On the plane I wear pants with a side zipper from the cuff to the calf that allows me to easily roll-down the suspension sleeve when I pre-board. I go ahead and do that so that I can let the prosthetic drop an inch or two down the stump for comfort. It's easy enough to discreetly roll it back up just prior to landing.

For longer trips of a week or so I'll bring a spare liner and a way to dry it. I may do this for short trips if I find it makes really good sense. For some of my longer trips, I might just purchase inexpensive crutches at the destination and give them away when through.

I'm sure I'll figure out what works for me but I appreciate the insight from those that have more experience. This is all so new for me!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On the plane I wear pants with a side zipper from the cuff to the calf that allows me to easily roll-down the suspension sleeve when I pre-board. I go ahead and do that so that I can let the prosthetic drop an inch or two down the stump for comfort. It's easy enough to discreetly roll it back up just prior to landing.

You single BK's are SO lucky, you know? I'm AK/BK and I could only dream of doing that.

Anyway, moving swiftly on...

I'm an 'old timer' (amp-wise) and don't use showers at all. I make sure that anywhere I stay has a bath, as it's much safer and easier for me.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Susan, I have a pair of the millennium crutches too.. As you, I'm not so cracked about them. I don't like the spring in the bottom of them, but I do like the ergonomic hand grips..

Steve, I have used an S hook with a pony clamp to hang my liners to dry in a hotel room. Usually, I have had to spread one end of the S hook wider so that it accommodates most towel racks in the hotels.. Then, buying a small pony clamp, I remove one rubber end off the handle and it has a pre-drilled hole that I hang on the S hook..I then clamp onto the pin on my liner..The idea was take from one we use at home ..... Hubby built me a 6 inch wide shelf for our bathroom when I first became an amp and we used the same idea on it, without the S hook..There are cup hooks screwed into the bottom of the shelf (which also has a wooden dowel rod across it to use as a towel bar) that I use to hang the clamps on.. That way, drying liners are out of the way, and reside there when not in use.. The shelf is used for storage of prosthetic stuff... ply socks, moisturizers, aloe, A&D ointment,etc.. all the things we use at one point or another.. I also use white cotton dish towels to blot my liners when traveling and at home.. It works well, and they are cheap and lint free..... ;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just a thought...

Why don't you use alcohol wipes when you're away from home? You won't have the problem of drying the liners then.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

For me, I don't stray too far from what works for me...I don't want to have to deal with skin break down because of something my skin won't handle or isn't familiar with.. Besides, the small clamp and S hook take up hardly any space in my luggage..So, I just wash them like I always do.

I guess, being a nurse's aide, and having my hand physically inside some of someones body to clean out giant bed-sores is something I don't forget, and just can't get away from what I was taught..

I have tried the wet-wipes out about on the farm when I need to pull up my liner because of sweat to wipe them off with, but I tend to react to any brand of them...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi All,

I do lots of travelling with work and just for fun. I think I am not as couth as some of you. I take my leg off on a plane as it is really uncomfortable to have it bent at such a sharp angle. Also, I travel with my working dog, Emma, and much of the time there is just not enough room for her 4 legs and my two, so one less helps.

I take "Wet Ones" with me. They come in travel packs of 15 and take up no room. I am curious about how people hang their liner with an S hook and a pony clamp (I am not sure what a pony clamp is) but it sounds less bulky than the stand that came with the liner--a plastic tube and base. I have found it difficult to get accessible rooms so I got a clamp on hand rail that is about 12" and it really helps me. I use the wrap around leg covering (which I put on absolutely backward this week and got my leg soaked) :unsure: I find I learn something each trip.

At night when I have to use the loo, I just crawl. I had bad knees before the amp and if I tried to hop I would land on the floor very quickly. It was strange when the loo was down the hall, but no one came out of their room and shrieked!

I am looking forward to seeing some of you in ten days in Atlanta

Peace, Beth Marie

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
For me, I don't stray too far from what works for me...I don't want to have to deal with skin break down because of something my skin won't handle or isn't familiar with.. Besides, the small clamp and S hook take up hardly any space in my luggage..So, I just wash them like I always do...

...I have tried the wet-wipes out about on the farm when I need to pull up my liner because of sweat to wipe them off with, but I tend to react to any brand of them...

I'm atopic Higgy and so I have to be careful what I use too. I just meant using the isopropyl alcohol wipes (assuming you don't react to alcohol).

As for airing/drying liners: If you have a lanyard system, you could ask for a spare lanyard cord and attach it to the hook of a coat hanger. If you have a locking pin, you could attach a thick shoe lace (or thin cord) to the hook of a coat hanger...put a few knots in the lace/cord to make a 'hole' (to secure the pin above and below) and you have a very light and small drying 'thingy'. If you only have one liner attached to the cord, you may find you have to weight the bottom slightly. I attach both my liners to one cord.

Oh & if you need the loo at night you could play safe and use a 'urinal'.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The cord sounds like an interesting thought, Lizzie.... thanks.........hadn't really considered that..

As far as the alcohol wipes, yes, they work, I just dry out from them, a lot. <_<

Beth Marie,

I purchased the S hook and the clamp at the local hardware store.. What I am calling a pony clamp, is found in the tool section... Most wood workers will use it for clamping wood when they are working with it..They just sort of look like a big clothes pin, for lack of a better description. It's metal, with orange vinyl tips and hand grips that will pull off.. I use one that is about 4 inches, possibly 5. Anyway, I remove one hand grip, then, since I wear a pin liner, I just clamp it on the pin, hang it on the S hook through the hole in the handle, and then hang it on a towel rack at the hotel, that way, they just hang to dry. Wearing Ossur liners, I never got the plastic stands that others do.. So, this was our way, at home, of "hanging" the liners up to finish drying after a pat dry. I knew about the clamps because we use them to clamp tarps down, among other things, here on the farm. So, when trying to figure out how to hang them up, it was just a natural leaning to use what I am familiar with..If you still have questions, just pm me, and I'll see what I can do for a further explanation.

You will have to have Susan introduce you in Atlanta.. It's just a short time away!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I do what BethMarie does, Wet Wipes. I use the DryPro when I shower. I clean stumpy and my liner with Wet Wipes. It works well for short trips. I might do something different if I were to be away for a long period of time.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I just brought a spare liner and some binder clips for drying (I've used them before). After the first night, my legs are tired and there are a few "wear spots" on the stump from all the airport walking, but overall things are well. The room is small so the trip to the loo from the bed isn't too bad, but the shower is....... entertaining! I asked about rooms for disabilities and got a funny cross-eyed look. Explained I was just looking for a shower with a seat and they said the only rooms for disabled were the rooms with wheelchair access; i.e. the first floor (smoking floor) rooms - no thanks! Made do and feel great today. Worst thing so far was that I wasn't using the supplied alarm clock and it was set at o'dark thirty. Oh well, if that's the worst....

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Steve,

I've travelled a lot since losing my leg - and have done pretty much all types of travel - backpacking for long periods of time, normal holidays, and work travel. I travel as light as possible. If I am going away for work and will only be away for a few days I tend just to bring the leg I'm wearing with me (unless I'm planning to go to the gym while I'm there when I bring my gym leg too). I also bring antibacterial wash for my liner. That's it. I deal with showers by standing on my good leg and with practise I can now get into pretty much any shower I am faced with.

I have been pretty lucky so far and haven't been in a situation where something has gone wrong with my leg and I've needed crutches so I don't bring them anywhere I go. I figure that if something goes wrong I will always be able to find a pair in whichever country I am.

I don't ask for special treatment in airports and just walk onto the plane with everyone else (although when I was new to the whole thing like you are I used sometimes to ask to get on first). On short haul flights I loosen the leg but keep it on so that it is easy to get into if I want to get up. On long haul flights I generally end up taking it completely off and resting my stump on top of it.

Hope that helps give some indication of what other people do when travelling.

Good luck with it all it sounds like you are doing great.

Fiona

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Buy a bottle of wine. Drink the wine. After washing liner, put over wine bottle to dry. Works for me ;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Buy a bottle of wine. Drink the wine. After washing liner, put over wine bottle to dry. Works for me ;)

You be bad!!! Very bad!!! LOL

I'll miss you next week.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Buy a bottle of wine. Drink the wine. After washing liner, put over wine bottle to dry. Works for me ;)

I like your thinking......

Well the trip went well and I'm ready for the next one! Fiona, your thoughts are very close to my own. The one thing I didn't bring was the detergent I use to clean the liner - next time. Once I get further along (I'm still in a test socket, etc.) I'll likely do the same as you and just board with the rest of the herd.

I did learn on the return trip that when traveling with others, for the time being it's best to try and just get them to go on ahead at their own speed and meet at the gate. While I was able to keep up, it really kicked my rear end and made me just somewhat frantic. Eventually yes, I'll just be like the rest of 'em, but for now I think I'll just go at my own speed!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×