When travelling, you want to do everything you can to avoid becoming ill. Can anything put a dampener quicker on your vacation plans than coming down with some illness? We think not, which is why we have compiled a list of ways you can protect yourself abroad and ensure that you get the most from your trip.
Be Careful What You Eat
No matter where you are travelling, you always need to be careful about what you are consuming. Not all food is made to appeal to your body’s immune system, and you need to find out what the local dishes are like and how they are prepared before you dive in.
More than that, though, you should be watching for unsafe cooking practices. Any street food should be carefully scrutinized, as that can sometimes be stored at unsafe temperatures for long periods of time and then not cooked thoroughly. One of the better ways to protect yourself is to ask for your meat cooked medium well.
Also, pay attention to where all the business is. If there’s a long line at one of the food vendors, then that’s pretty good indication that they are selling quality food.
Make Sure the Water Is Purified
It is not wise to trust the local water supply either. You may not know how it is treated and if it contains any toxins. If in doubt, just go for bottled water and only choose brands that you know and trust. If there are no international brands available, then look on the packaging for the term “reverse osmosis”, which denotes one of the most sure-fire ways to remove toxins.
Tap water should always be suspect, even in developed countries, as the rules regarding its treatment and handling are often not as strict as those for international bottled water brands. It’s often safer to drink tea or coffee since the water will be boiled and much of the bacteria will be killed during that process.
Wash Your Hands Regularly
Anytime you are visiting a different part of the world, you are subjecting your body to a host of new bacteria and organisms. These may be things that your immune system hasn’t built up a resistance to yet, so you want to be careful about letting those microorganisms into your body.
This meansthe you need to wash your hands often and thoroughly. Take advantage of local washrooms frequently to clean your hands and keep the germs at bay. You may also want to bring along hand sanitizer or cleansing wipes to keep your hands clean of germs. Be sure to wash anytime you are going to eat and definitely after you use the washroom.
Know What You Are Getting Into
Before you visit a new country or part of the world, you need to prepare for any illnesses that are commonly found there. Do a little research to find out what diseases, outbreaks and common allergens are present, and then take the appropriate steps to prepare yourself for them. You can bring some medication (just be sure it is allowed into the country), become vaccinated or just stay away from areas of that country where there are outbreaks. All of this will help you stay safe and lower your risk of contracting an illness.
On top of all that, you need to know where the local hospital is and be ready to get medical help if it is necessary. If you do that, you will be far safer and have a lot more time to enjoy your vacation instead of fighting an illness.