Wednesday, 29 July 2015

Packing essentials

magazine, book fan and sleep essentials in hospital

OK, so many blogs and articles at the moment are advising us how to pack for the summer holidays - but what about packing for other situations, like a trip into hospital or rehabilitation? 

Quite different to a holiday essentials list of course, but just as important I think. 

Here are my top 10 items to pack, based on my experiences. Hope you find them useful!

  • Ear plugs – wax or foam, depending on how light a sleeper you are – wax are better for blocking out the usual hospital related disruptions.
  • Eye mask – again, for light sleepers, this can help block out lights from other cubicles, or lights switched on during the night.
  • Lavender oil/spray – a few drops on the pillow or night clothes can help aid relaxation.
lavendar aromatherapy oil

  • Moisturiser – heating and dry air in hospitals can really dry out the skin – bring a good moisturiser to apply at least twice a day. I brought new Boots Botanics this time, review to follow.
Botanics hydrating day cream SPF 15

  • Ipod – relaxing music or meditation apps can help to block out noise, calm your mind, lift the mood, or help induce sleep. I particularly like Relax Lite, available for both Apple and Android . Equally, upbeat music can help with motivation before or during physiotherapy sessions.
  • Reading material – a good book can be helpful at night time especially if you’ve no TV available, and magazines can help pass the time on a quiet afternoon or visitor-free evening.

  • Netflix – if you have a tablet or laptop, try signing up for a free month with Netflix if you haven’t already – plenty of choice there to pass some time, and you can cancel afterwards if you choose to.  Of course, I did this a year ago, and I'm still signed up. Just can't help myself.
  • Hand-held/travel fan – hospitals can be like a sauna regardless of the weather or season.  Avoid the open/close window debates and have your own little fan at hand when needed, especially at night time.  Don’t forget spare batteries. 
  • Chargers – probably one of the most important on the list, chargers. Don’t forget all your electronic devices will run low pretty fast in there, so make sure you have a charger for each or at least one that suits them all.
  • Goodies – hospital food is a bit hit-and-miss at the best of times. If you have the facility, bring some of your own favourites to store in a fridge, or some snacks for your bedside locker - (learn from my mistake and remember fruit and chocolate won’t survive too long in that heat). Plenty of water too is obviously important, especially if you’re doing physiotherapy every day. 

Obviously this is a short list, compared to the size of the bag I ended up with.  I could list more but we'd be here all day.

Are there any other particular items you'd recommend? 

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