Travel and Hydrotherapy


Travel can be exhausting!  Living on the west coast with family on the east coast (as well as my lifelong love for travel and foreign culture), I am no stranger to overnight flights and sleepless nights.  (Though I have come to love the bizarreness of walking around a foreign place when the rest-of-what-seems-like-the-world is asleep.  Maybe I just love anything bizarre.)

When I was at a Lyme conference in San Francisco, I fortuitously discovered how much hydrotherapy can help with travel induced fatigue.  My flight had been delayed several hours due to a tornado in the SF area so I arrived around 2am and didn’t get to sleep until 4 because I was visiting a dear friend  from college in Palo Alto and we naturally had some catching up to do.

She described to me in detail how to work her shower to turn the hot water on … but the next morning with 3 hours of sleep behind me I couldn’t figure it out.  I took a COLD (and very short) shower and was off.  She dropped me off at the conference and literally gasped when I told her I hadn’t been able to work the hot water.  It actually turned out to help me (!) – thanks M!

Part of the ND curriculum is hydrotherapy.  It is an awesome class and lab.  We often use hydrotherapy on our patients in the clinic – everything ranging from Peat Baths to Constitutional Hydrotherapy.

Here is a video of Dr. Letitia Dick-Watrous, N.D., discussing constitutional hydro.  She is a role model amongst the naturopathic community, especially those of us who wish to practice vitalistic medicine.

I now use hydrotherapy whenever I travel.  I typically end my showers on very cold for about 30 seconds.  However, when I am not up for this, I end with very cold water over my adrenal and thyroid glands (basically lower back and anterior neck).  I have also found it helpful to do this on the soles of my feet and palms (reflex areas for the uterus and can help with menstrual cramps).  Please watch Dr. Dick’s video for more details on hydrotherapy – she says it better than I ever could.  I would love to one day study with her.

I called this picture:  “Jetlag on the Beach” because I hadn’t slept more then a few hours when I took it on my most recent trip home.

The name is attributed to Philip Glass.  (Specifically his opera – “Einstein on the Beach,” for those of you unfamiliar.)  Also a small homage to my favorite music professor in college, Dr. Gregory Slowik for greatly enhancing my musical palate.

Do you have any travel tricks to share?  Favorite travel music?