Blog Section

How to Avoid Deep Vein Thrombosis While Traveling This Holiday Season

DVT holidayRecently a friend of mine who is a makeup artist in Los Angeles, boarded a flight for Australia after a grueling 20 day shoot. She was exhausted! She had one glass of red wine and slept the entire 15 hour flight to Sydney. When she arrived and was deplaning, she felt a bit shaky and blacked out. She woke up in the ICU. She suffered from a Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT). The blood clot broke loose and traveled to her lungs. She spent 5 days in the Intensive Care Unit and was told she almost died. My friend is in her mid forties and in good health. We’re all at risk.

Not all of us find ourselves on 15 hour plane rides but a flight of 4 hours is not uncommon and can put you at risk for DVT. Here are 5 tips to help you remain healthy this holiday season.

1. Make time for walking breaks
If your leg is bent in a seated position for a long period of time it can reduce blood flow and increase risk for clot. Standing up and moving can help. Try taking a stroll up and down the aisle, request an aisle seat so that it’s easier to get up and move around.

2. Seated Exercises
Every 30 minutes you should flex your feet and move your legs to promote blood flow. Move your ankles as if your pressing on the gas pedal of a car for 20-30 reps to help with circulation.

3. Wear Compression Stockings
These special stockings, for men and women, provide graduated pressure that is strongest at the ankles and decreases toward the knee to improve blood flow to the lower leg.

4. Blood-Thinning Medication
If you have a history of DVT you should consider asking your healthcare provider about taking a blood-thinning medication while you travel. They reduce your blood’s ability to clot.  Examples are Lovenox and aspirin.

5. Stay Hydrated, Limit Alcohol
Dehydration can increase your risk for DVT. Drink plenty of fluids before and during your flight to ensure you stay well hydrated. Also, limit alcohol because it can lead to dehydration.

On behalf of myself and my staff – Have a Safe and Happy Holiday!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *