Getting sick at home is bad enough but getting sick while on vacation or travelling on business is something we should all try our best to avoid. In random order, here are a few travel tips to help you stay healthy when you travel:
Before you leave home:
1. You’ll have less chance of “catching something” if your immune system is strong so spend the weeks leading up to your departure making sure you eat lots of fresh fruit and vegetables, get enough sleep and exercise, and try to manage everyday stress. It also helps if you can avoid situations and environments where others may have colds and flu.
2. If you are any prescribed medication, make sure you take a sufficient amount with you in their original prescription bottles (just in case you are questioned by airport security) plus a copy of the prescription just in case you loose your luggage or medication on the road and need to refill.
3. If you wear prescription lenses, be sure to carry that prespcription with you as well.
4. If traveling to an emerging destination, consult a local travel clinic to ask if any special shots are recommended for that destination. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention has extensive information on the subject and allows you to search by specific country.
5. IAMAT, the International Association for Medical Assistance to Travelers is another excellent source of information.
6. If you are going to a high-altitude area – San Miguel de Allende in Mexico, for instance – consult your doctor first, especially if you have heart or lung disease.
7. Carry a basic first-aid kit including anti-bacterial ointment, bandaids and anti-itch cream for mosquito bites. You’ll find a complete list of suggestions from the CDC
8. Finally, make sure your travel insurance is adequate for your needs.
These tips are sponsored by Travelan
During the trip:
1. When flying, drink more water than you do alcohol. Other tips for staying healthy when you fly.
2. On long flights, occasionally get up from your seat and walk up and down the aisles to avoid the possible formation of blood clots, a.k.a. DVT or Deep Vein Thrombosis.
3. Naturally, avoid tap water, peeled fruits, vegetables, salads and ice cubes. It’s also a good idea, unless you are certain that the food is safe, to not buy and eat food from street stands.
4. Don’t walk around in bare feet.
5. Don’t swim in fresh water.
6. If you plan to have sex while on vacation, use a condom!
7. The most common causes of death for travellers involve road accidents and drownings. Be sure to avoid overcrowded buses, ferries and motorbikes, and never travel by road in rural areas after dark.
8. Many infectious diseases are spread by mosquitoes and ticks. Use repellents and remember that they can wear off quickly.
9. Wear sunscreen and a hat during peak sun hours to sunstroke and nasty burns.
10. Remember the old adage: An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.