A Guide To Sanitary Precautions For Travel At Any Age
Published By Global Insurance Advisory
When we are going to travel to exotic countries far from our home, we have some concerns regarding health: what happens if I get sick? Where do I go in case of an accident? How can I prepare myself to minimise exposure? To external agents that can cause diseases? Here I will give you some preventive guidelines * 1orientativas.
Healthcare in many areas of Southeast Asia is deficient, not to mention that in many places they do not speak another language than their own, so it is complicated to explain symptoms to doctors and nurses. On the other hand, in many countries health is not public and private care can be extremely expensive, especially if you have to be hospitalised or repatriated.
That is why is it highly recommended * 2 that you take the following health precautions when travelling:
MEDICINES, MEDICAL AND VACCINES
- Go to your family doctor BEFORE making the trip to check the general state of your health.
- Do not forget to visit the dentist, the last thing you want is to have a toothache on an island lost in the middle of nowhere.
- If you have paid (private) medical coverage in your country, ask about your international coverage and make sure you always carry your card with you along with 24-hour international attention telephones.
- In case of not having private coverage, or that does not cover you during your stay, hire medical insurance that covers the possible health eventualities that arise during the trip.
- If you have a chronic illness, be sure to take the medicines you need along the way by hand. Take enough supplies for your stay and make the prospect with you because, if you need to buy more, the trade name usually varies from one country to another, but not the generic component.
- You have prepared a certificate from your doctor translated into English, in case you need to take medicines not allowed in the hand luggage of flights or you want to record in your history that you are allergic to any medication or chemical component.
- If you have allergic problems, you should take into account the seasonal nature of the country and the possibility of a crisis during the trip. Always take your medication by hand.
- Take a medical kit in your backpack. Many times you will find yourself far from a pharmacy, or it will be difficult to see the elements you need.
- Do not forget to get vaccinated! Find out in the embassies of the countries you are planning to travel to, or in the international vaccination centres of your city, what are your valuable pre-trip vaccines. Some vaccinations are subject to international regulations, which means that the Local Authorities of the country you visit require an international vaccination certificate upon entry. The International Vaccination Centers only administer this type of immunisation authorised and approved by the World Health Organization.
- Click here if you want to know the health situation by country.
CLOTHES AND SHOES
- Wear clothes and shoes appropriate for the climate you will be in. Choose apparel made of natural fibres (cotton, linen, etc.) light, unadjusted and ideally with light colours – so as not to attract the attention of mosquitoes. Footwear must be ventilated to prevent fungal infections.
- In many areas, there are substantial differences between daytime and nighttime temperatures, or there are even these differences in ambient temperatures in air-conditioned places such as bars, restaurants, hotels and aeroplanes. This contrast increases the predisposition to colds that can be prevented by using appropriate clothing. Always have some coat on hand for these occasions.
- At night, especially in the jungle or urban areas with little light, wear long pants and closed shoes to avoid bites of some insects or animals; and cuts.
FOOD AND DRINK
- You have to be attentive to what you eat. Diarrhoea is the most frequent illness in travel. To prevent it you should avoid raw foods (such as salads, molluscs or fish), the fruit only eats it without skin and, when you can, consume yoghurt, which replenishes the intestinal flora.
- Try not to drink liquids with ice and drink bottled water ALWAYS.
- Eating in street stalls is almost inevitable in the countries of Southeast Asia. So try to do it in those that seem “cleaner”.
- Due to the climate that exists in tropical countries, it is advisable to drink plenty of fluids to avoid dehydration.
- You can drink hot drinks, such as tea or coffee since the temperature at which they are made them safe.
- Wash your hands before eating and, as much as possible, wash your teeth with bottled water.
- Excessive heat and humidity and exaggerated efforts in those conditions (long walks, climbing a volcano or ruin) can cause from exhaustion, loss of fluids and mineral salts to a severe heat stroke that requires urgent medical intervention. In cases of exhaustion, it is recommended to drink tea and drinks rich in mineral salts (juices / juices of fruits and vegetables, vegetable broths, etc.).
- In many Asian countries, because of its proximity to the equator, the sun’s rays fall perpendicularly, so that exposure to them can cause severe sunstroke and burns, especially in people with clear skin. One way to avoid it is to adapt slowly to the sun’s rays with a progressive exposure. Always wear a hat or cap, sunglasses and apply creams with sunscreen on face and body.
- It is advisable to avoid contact with any type of animal, including domestic animals, since these animals may not be sanitary controlled.
- As a reflex the serpent and scorpions sting, especially at night. The use of appropriate and solid footwear is very important to walk at night in areas inhabited by these animals. It is convenient to examine footwear and clothes before putting it on, especially in the morning, since snakes and scorpions tend to take shelter in them.
- In the tropics, watercourses, canals, lakes, etc., may be infected by larvae that penetrate the skin and cause diseases. It is necessary to avoid washing and bathing in waters that may be contaminated by human and animal excrement, since they can be routes of transmission of eye, ear and intestinal infections. Before you bathe in those waters, ask if it is advisable and safe to do so.
- In principle, bathing in the sea does not imply a risk of communicable diseases. However, it is recommended that the traveler inform himself in the place if it is allowed to bathe and it does not suppose a danger for the health. Jellyfish stings cause severe skin pain and irritation. He also asks the local people what kind of aquatic animals there are in the area. In many tourist sites where snorkeling is done there are sea urchins and other animals that can sting you.
- If you are going to have sex, use a condom / condom. AIDS and hepatitis B, among many other sexually transmitted diseases, are widespread in the world.
- Avoid using scented creams, lotions, perfumes or cologne since some fragrances attract mosquitoes and others can generate skin irritation if you expose them to the sun.
- Preferably carry tampons with an applicator, since in many places hygiene is deficient, if not nil. Also, in many cities you will not find tampons since Asians do not use them.
Source: Global Insurance Advisory