First and foremost I want to include a trigger warning, this post will be talking about issues surrounding emetophobia. Travelling abroad (or anywhere for that matter), can be such a strain on mental health. It’s made even worse if you suffer from a mental illness and can make you feel uneasy. I suffer from emetophobia (fear of sick), which causes me to have intrusive thoughts and severe panic attacks. Its safe to say I was pretty anxious about travelling abroad, but I was also determined to not let my emetophobia take over my mind and ruin my holiday. So here we have a few things I put in place to help manage my anxiety whilst away.
TAKE ANTI-SICKNESS TABLETS / ANTACIDS
A few months ago I went to my doctor and asked if there was anything else that could be done to help me manage my emetophobia and she prescribed me anti-sickness tablets. Even though I don’t necessarily need them, they really help to act as a safety blanket for me. I decided to take one of these most mornings, so I was set for the day and hopefully feel no nausea whatsoever. I must say this really helped me out, whether it was a placebo or not it put me at ease and made me feel safe. Alongside the anti-sickness tablets, I took some antacids with me because anxiety can cause acid reflux/heartburn (as gross as it sounds). But again, if you feel that coming on, you just have to take one of these and hopefully, you’ll be good to go!
WHEREVER YOU GO, THERE YOU ARE
This is actually a title of a mindfulness book, that I’d highly recommend. This was a statement I was constantly telling myself whilst I was away. Wherever you go, there you are. There’s nothing you can do about the situation you’re in, once you’re somewhere, that’s it, what can be done. So I tried my best to live in the moment and not even think 5 minutes into the future and just live in the now. It takes a lot of practice to do this, but its definitely a technique I’ve found very helpful.
USE TRAVEL SICKNESS BANDS
Something I found out through watching Lily Pebbles Instagram stories when she was away in Miami. I don’t suffer from travel sickness myself, but my emetophobia likes to convince me that I do. These wristbands work by exerting pressure on the acupuncture point P6, by the means of a plastic button. I don’t know much about acupuncture, but I’m always willing to try out methods of reducing any nausea that doesn’t involve medication. I wore these on the plane, again mostly as a safety blanket and to put my mind at ease.
I know that these three things aren’t necessarily the answer to solving emetophobia, but they really did help me to keep calm for the entirety of the trip. I’d love to hear any other ways you keep your anxiety at bay when you’re travelling!