Thinking of international travel? Here are some tips on staying healthy.
- Get the recommended vaccines well before departure.
- Take a kit with medicines for common problems: diarrhea, colds, motion sickness, upset stomach, cuts, scrapes, bug bites, pain, sunburn, etc.
- Drink only boiled or bottled water or carbonated drinks from sources you trust. Avoid tap water, fountain drinks, and ice cubes. Wipe off the cans and bottles before drinking.
- Use bottled water to brush your teeth.
- Don’t swim in stagnant or polluted water or after a heavy rainfall. Use googles and nose/ear plugs. Shower afterwards. Wash cuts with clean water and soap.
- Eat only fully cooked food or fruits and vegetables you have peeled. Remember: boil it, cook it, peel it, or forget it!
- Don’t buy food or drinks from street vendors.
- If visiting an area where there is risk for malaria, take malaria prevention medication before, during, and after your trip, as directed.
- Use insect repellent with DEET to prevent mosquito and tick bites.
- Wash your hands frequently with with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand rub, especially before eating.
Check your medical coverage. Most private insurers and Medicare don’t cover costs outside the United States. Consider TRAVEL INSURANCE!
For more information, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website.