Guidelines for Your Travel Medicine
Whether you’re traveling out of the country or domestically, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that you put together a health kit for your trips and your travel medicine.
When you travel make sure you don’t just combine all your travel medicine pills into a plastic bag or even a daily-dose container just for convenience. All prescription medications should be kept in their original containers with readable labels, so the contents are easily identified. The TSA or other officials may require proper identification of your medications and make sure the patient’s name and dosing instructions are clearly visible on each container.
To be safe, and avoid undue scrutiny at the airport, travelers should carry copies of all prescriptions they are carrying.
For controlled substances and injectable medications, travelers should carry a note from the prescribing physician – these can easily be tucked into a separate container and kept with the travel medicines.
According to the TSA travel blog “Medication in liquid form is allowed in carry-on bags in excess of 3.4 ounces in reasonable quantities for the flight. It is not necessary to place medically required liquids in a zip-top bag. However, you must tell the officer that you have medically necessary liquids at the start of the screening checkpoint process. Medically required liquids will be subjected to additional screening that could include being asked to open the container.”
If you’re traveling in a vehicle, make sure to keep your medications out of the sun or prevent them from getting too hot or too cold.
According to the FDA, the sweet spot temperature to store all medications (unless they need to be refrigerated) is between 75-77 degrees. That’s a pretty narrow range so keep medications in the passenger compartment of a plane or vehicle instead of the vehicle’s trunk or the airplane’s cargo hold.
Have you ever unpacked your travel bag after a long airplane trip – everything is still really cold because the cargo area is kept around 44 degrees. That’s not bad considering the outside temperature at 30,000 feet is -60 degrees.
When flying, carry more than enough travel medicine in case of travel delays and make sure you carry a supply of over-the-counter medicines with you. For example, an antidiarrheal, a pain reliever such as aspirin or acetaminophen, and an antihistamine (for allergic reaction) like Benadryl – preferably in tablet form. Be sure to talk to your doctor about your medical conditions, travel medicine or vacccines you may need prior to travel.