Health & Wellbeing  •   Published 27/05/2016  •  Updated 27/01/2023  •  By Emma Breedon

Holidays Can Seriously Damage Your Health

seniors enjoying holiday

Here at Telecare24, we love to talk about holidays! In previous articles, we’ve discussed topics such as how to care for elderly relatives when planning a holiday. As we all know, millions of older people still love to go on vacation.

The sad events surrounding the death of actor James Gandolfini in 2016 at the age of just 51 had highlighted that a heart attack is the leading cause of death for holidaymakers. Experts have suggested that going away can actually be detrimental to our health.

How does that work you may ask?

According to the journal Psychosomatic Medicine, taking a vacation puts additional strain on the body because we engage in activities that are out of the ordinary. This could be due to daily excursions, eating or drinking more, and forgetting to take medication. Other attributing factors include:

Tips on Planning a Holiday

During the summer, many older relatives may decide to stay in the UK and go visit family or friends. This is a great time to catch up with children and grandchildren. If this is the case, here are some tips you might find helpful.

  1. Duration: Compared to previous generations, families today frequently prefer longer vacations. Decide to meet up for a portion of a longer trip or find a happy medium that won’t lead to disappointment (perhaps 4-5 days).
  2. Destination: Choose a location with a suitable climate, accessible spaces and plenty of culinary options. Prioritise selecting a destination where you can spend quality time together.
  3. Transportation: Try to choose less intense transport options such as ferry, car or coach travel. If this is not possible, call your travel company in advance to discuss the additional support that is offered.
  4. Accommodation: Select a type of accommodation that’s well-resourced and easily accessible. A hotel lets you take a more hands-off approach, while a self-catering apartment can keep you all together.
  5. Attractions: Look for attractions and activities suitable for all age groups. Maintain a flexible schedule (one that allows for plenty of rest and refreshment breaks) and don’t be afraid to break off to do different things throughout the day.
  6. Medication: Double-check your parents have brought all the medication they’ll need during the trip, including extra. Ask them to bring any relevant paperwork in case replacements are needed.

Enjoy Your Vacation with Your Personal Alarm

Along with these tips, if you use a personal alarm and are thinking of visiting family for an extended period of time in the UK, you may want to think about taking your alarm with you. As long as your relative has a telephone line, you can plug your alarm straight in upon arrival. Often, your relatives can plug their telephone into the back of the alarm unit, that way they won’t lose access to their home phone. Additionally, you are still able to contact people if you experience difficulties.

IMPORTANT: If you decide to temporarily move your alarm to another address, you must inform your careline monitoring team. To do this, press your pendant and speak to an operator, explaining what you plan to do. You will need to provide the applicable dates, along with the temporary address and contact details.

The author of the report, Dr. Altman, suggests that if we have any long term medical conditions, we should adjust our holiday accordingly. Apparently, you’re more at risk in the first 48 hours of your arrival.

If it was me, I think I’ll just crash out in my hotel room for the first two days to pass by! Failing that, I’ll just stay home!

Thank you for reading this article. We hope you found it helpful. For more information like this, please visit our blog.

About The Author

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Emma Breedon

Emma joined Telecare24 whilst the company was in its infancy and has been vital in shaping the service into what it is today. As Customer Care Manager, Emma epitomizes the company's core values and pr... Read More

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