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Carrying Prescription Meds on Your Next Flight: 6 Things to Know

Carrying Prescription Meds on Your Next Flight: 6 Things to Know

Carrying prescription meds shouldn’t prevent you from enjoying travelling. After all, medicine is supposed to improve your quality of life, not inhibit it. Before you hit the lonesome trails, take some time to organize your meds and line up the proper documentation. This will help you speed through customs and other check points, and it can help eliminate unnecessary delays or other problems with carrying any type of drugs. Here’s everything you need to know.

1. Keep the Medications in the Original Pharmacy Packaging

The pharmacy dispenses medications in recognizable containers, complete with the name, address, and phone number for both your doctor and the pharmacy. Usually, this official packaging is all the legitimacy you need for domestic flights. If you plan to travel overseas, be sure to check with your airlines, as well as customs agencies at your destination and any airports where you have to stop and change planes.

Sometimes airlines have restrictions on the amount of medication you can carry, especially when it’s in liquid form. You can ask the pharmacy to dispense your medicine into a smaller container for travel purposes to meet airline guidelines. Whenever possible, it’s best to keep medications in your checked bags instead of your carry-on luggage. If you need to bring a small dose on board to take during the flight, make sure it is in a legitimate package complete with the pharmacy and doctor information.

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2. Get a Note From Your Doctor on Official Stationery

Controlled substances, such as tranquilizers and narcotics, are often tougher to get through security check points. Get your doctor to make a list of all your prescriptions on his office stationary, complete with his full name and contact information. If the original pharmacy packaging is questioned, this documentation is your back up plan. This is especially important if you are bringing on medications that are controlled substances or are dispensed with a hypodermic needle. Be sure to pack syringes safely so unsuspecting TSA agents aren’t caught off guard by the needles.

This is also helpful for patients who have extensive medications or who need to carry unusually large amounts of medicines. Above a certain amount can be considered enough to distribute, putting you in the awkward position of defending yourself against drug trafficking charges. Check with local authorities at your travel destination if you have concerns.

3. Refill Enough of Your Medications Before Leaving

Count how many doses you have on hand before you leave, and make sure you won’t run out when you’re far away from your home, doctor, or pharmacy. Be sure to include a few extra doses in case there are travel delays. Check with your health insurance company to see if an emergency doctor’s appointment or prescription refill is covered outside of your home state or country, and make alternate plans if these things are not covered.

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Online pharmacies can be helpful in these situations, such as www.canadianpharmacymeds.com. Travel insurance can help offset some expenses in case you need emergency medical care while you’re away. Ask your travel agent, because these packages are generally more affordable when purchased together with your other travel needs.

4. Put Your Prescriptions in a Medical Travel Kit

All travelers need a medical supply kit packed and kept handy. The kit should include all your regular medications, along with some you need less frequently. Depending on where your travels take you, you’ll need to pack items such as:

  • Pain reliever
  • Anti-nausea medicine
  • Anti-diarrhea medicine
  • Sunscreen
  • Bug spray
  • Motion sickness medication
  • Allergy medication
  • First aid supplies, including anti bacterial ointment and bandages

Before you leave with your medical kit, check to assure that none of the over the counter medications you’re bringing along conflict with your prescription drugs. If you wait until you’re feeling ill on your trip, you could accidentally cause yourself a dangerous drug interaction.

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5. Make Plans for Refrigerating or Storing Medications

Drugs that need to be stored in certain temperatures require even more planning. For the travel, you might consider taking a small cooler on board, but you’ll need to make sure that your destination offers easy access to a refrigerator or cooler. Call ahead to the hotel, and don’t forget to make plans for tours and other outings that keep you away from the refrigerator longer than you need to go without your medication.

You may need to carry dry ice or other alternatives for taking your meds on longer excursions. When going through a travel agent, don’t take her word for whether or not there is a refrigerator in your hotel room. Call the hotel yourself and verify it. Also, make alternative plans in case the power goes out or the refrigerator in the hotel room goes out.

6. Bring Medication Information With You

Pack all the information that comes with your prescription refills so that you’ll have it with you on the trip. This information lets you know potential drug or food interactions, whether it’s okay to take the drugs with alcohol, milk, or other liquids, and possible side effects to look for. Don’t depend on the Internet to be available everywhere you go. You need to know what to expect from your medication even when Web searches aren’t available. Plus, these informational packets lend legitimacy to the prescriptions you’re taking with you on airlines and through customs.

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Even if you’ve been on the medications for a while and are used to them, take a few minutes to reread the information before your trip. Over time, it’s easy to forget warnings that you aren’t used to dealing with, and your diet and lifestyle on vacation are likely to be much different from your normal patterns at home. For example, it’s easy to forget that the package warns against excessive sun exposure if you live in a cloudy city but are traveling to a beach.

Making plans for transporting and storing your medication ahead of time means you don’t have to worry about such things once you’re on the trip. When you leave, forget you’re even on anything at all and enjoy the trip! Trust your well-formed plans to work like they’re supposed to.

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Last Updated on January 21, 2020

The Best Way to Create a Vision for the Life You Want

The Best Way to Create a Vision for the Life You Want

Creating a vision for your life might seem like a frivolous, fantastical waste of time, but it’s not: creating a compelling vision of the life you want is actually one of the most effective strategies for achieving the life of your dreams. Perhaps the best way to look at the concept of a life vision is as a compass to help guide you to take the best actions and make the right choices that help propel you toward your best life.

your vision of where or who you want to be is the greatest asset you have

    Why You Need a Vision

    Experts and life success stories support the idea that with a vision in mind, you are more likely to succeed far beyond what you could otherwise achieve without a clear vision. Think of crafting your life vision as mapping a path to your personal and professional dreams. Life satisfaction and personal happiness are within reach. The harsh reality is that if you don’t develop your own vision, you’ll allow other people and circumstances to direct the course of your life.

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    How to Create Your Life Vision

    Don’t expect a clear and well-defined vision overnight—envisioning your life and determining the course you will follow requires time, and reflection. You need to cultivate vision and perspective, and you also need to apply logic and planning for the practical application of your vision. Your best vision blossoms from your dreams, hopes, and aspirations. It will resonate with your values and ideals, and will generate energy and enthusiasm to help strengthen your commitment to explore the possibilities of your life.

    What Do You Want?

    The question sounds deceptively simple, but it’s often the most difficult to answer. Allowing yourself to explore your deepest desires can be very frightening. You may also not think you have the time to consider something as fanciful as what you want out of life, but it’s important to remind yourself that a life of fulfillment does not usually happen by chance, but by design.

    It’s helpful to ask some thought-provoking questions to help you discover the possibilities of what you want out of life. Consider every aspect of your life, personal and professional, tangible and intangible. Contemplate all the important areas, family and friends, career and success, health and quality of life, spiritual connection and personal growth, and don’t forget about fun and enjoyment.

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    Some tips to guide you:

    • Remember to ask why you want certain things
    • Think about what you want, not on what you don’t want.
    • Give yourself permission to dream.
    • Be creative. Consider ideas that you never thought possible.
    • Focus on your wishes, not what others expect of you.

    Some questions to start your exploration:

    • What really matters to you in life? Not what should matter, what does matter.
    • What would you like to have more of in your life?
    • Set aside money for a moment; what do you want in your career?
    • What are your secret passions and dreams?
    • What would bring more joy and happiness into your life?
    • What do you want your relationships to be like?
    • What qualities would you like to develop?
    • What are your values? What issues do you care about?
    • What are your talents? What’s special about you?
    • What would you most like to accomplish?
    • What would legacy would you like to leave behind?

    It may be helpful to write your thoughts down in a journal or creative vision board if you’re the creative type. Add your own questions, and ask others what they want out of life. Relax and make this exercise fun. You may want to set your answers aside for a while and come back to them later to see if any have changed or if you have anything to add.

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    What Would Your Best Life Look Like?

    Describe your ideal life in detail. Allow yourself to dream and imagine, and create a vivid picture. If you can’t visualize a picture, focus on how your best life would feel. If you find it difficult to envision your life 20 or 30 years from now, start with five years—even a few years into the future will give you a place to start. What you see may surprise you. Set aside preconceived notions. This is your chance to dream and fantasize.

    A few prompts to get you started:

    • What will you have accomplished already?
    • How will you feel about yourself?
    • What kind of people are in your life? How do you feel about them?
    • What does your ideal day look like?
    • Where are you? Where do you live? Think specifics, what city, state, or country, type of community, house or an apartment, style and atmosphere.
    • What would you be doing?
    • Are you with another person, a group of people, or are you by yourself?
    • How are you dressed?
    • What’s your state of mind? Happy or sad? Contented or frustrated?
    • What does your physical body look like? How do you feel about that?
    • Does your best life make you smile and make your heart sing? If it doesn’t, dig deeper, dream bigger.

    It’s important to focus on the result, or at least a way-point in your life. Don’t think about the process for getting there yet—that’s the next stepGive yourself permission to revisit this vision every day, even if only for a few minutes. Keep your vision alive and in the front of your mind.

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    Plan Backwards

    It may sound counter-intuitive to plan backwards rather than forwards, but when you’re planning your life from the end result, it’s often more useful to consider the last step and work your way back to the first. This is actually a valuable and practical strategy for making your vision a reality.

    • What’s the last thing that would’ve had to happen to achieve your best life?
    • What’s the most important choice you would’ve had to make?
    • What would you have needed to learn along the way?
    • What important actions would you have had to take?
    • What beliefs would you have needed to change?
    • What habits or behaviors would you have had to cultivate?
    • What type of support would you have had to enlist?
    • How long will it have taken you to realize your best life?
    • What steps or milestones would you have needed to reach along the way?

    Now it’s time to think about your first step, and the next step after that. Ponder the gap between where you are now and where you want to be in the future. It may seem impossible, but it’s quite achievable if you take it step-by-step.

    It’s important to revisit this vision from time to time. Don’t be surprised if your answers to the questions, your technicolor vision, and the resulting plans change. That can actually be a very good thing; as you change in unforeseeable ways, the best life you envision will change as well. For now, it’s important to use the process, create your vision, and take the first step towards making that vision a reality.

    Featured photo credit: Matt Noble via unsplash.com

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