Before a vacation, we distance ourselves from friends and family showing flu and cold-like symptoms. After all, getting sick days before a trip jeopardizes the whole thing! But even if you make it to your departure date healthy, you’re not yet in the clear.
There are ample opportunities to get sick on vacation—especially when travelling abroad. So here are few strategies to combat all kinds of sickness!
Different countries—or even parts of your home country—have bacteria your immune system does not know. Vaccines help prevent foreign bacteria and viruses from getting the best of your body by giving it what it needs to resist them. Before any vacation, ask your physician if you need to update or receive any new vaccines.
Drink Bottled Water
Sometimes, you cannot guarantee the sanitation of local city water. To the locals accustomed to what bacteria exists in the water, drinking from the tap is safe; but for a newcomer, it can seriously mess up your stomach (think Mexico). This includes ice cubes in the drinks that you order!
Even though bottled water costs money, be sure to drink enough of it. Water helps with your digestion and immune systems but flushing toxins and maintaining energy levels.
Wash Your Hands
The biggest favour you can do for yourself is clean your hands often. Don’t wait until you get back to your hotel—use hand sanitizer or wash up in public washrooms. Doing so will minimize the spreading of germs, especially if you touch your face by habit.
Pack Some Medical Essentials
Pack the following in your suitcase or stop by a pharmacy during your travels.
- Bug spray—fresh bug bites itch and sting, but those that fester can produce many symptoms: fevers, allergic reactions, hives, rashes and more.
- Sunscreen—if you think sunburn hurts, imagine sun poisoning, a condition caused by prolonged unprotected exposure to the sun. Symptoms include swelling, blistering, headaches, fevers, chills and nausea.
- First aid—injuries happen to travellers all the time. From scratches to fractures, you need to prepare for medical emergencies on-the-go to prevent infection.
Get Enough Sleep
Interestingly, sleep affects your immune system. A lack of it not only makes you sluggish, but you’re also more likely to catch a virus. Likewise, the recovery period will be much longer without adequate rest.