8 Tips to Stay Healthy While Traveling
Whether you’re traveling for spring break or planning your summer vacay in the coming months, there is nothing like having an amazing trip planned only for it to be ruined by an illness or injury. As you’re planning and making all the incredible memories, keep these tips in mind to ensure you have the best chance of having a healthy trip!
Update your vaccinations
Certain foreign countries may pose a risk of disease. Be sure to plan well in advance to receive the appropriate vaccinations as some may require more than one dose months apart. Visit the CDC to see the vaccines they recommend by country.
A disruption to a person’s circadian rhythm compromises the immune system. If you plan to cross time zones, start gradually shifting your wake and sleep schedule the week prior to traveling if possible. If that’s not possible, stay well-hydrated during travel, avoid alcohol and caffeine, and spend some time outside upon arrival to help you adjust to your new schedule.
Even seasoned travelers may experience some anxiety when traveling. If the thought of gliding through the skies at 30,000 feet terrifies you, don’t be afraid to mention it to your physician. Anti-anxiety medication may be right for you. For mild nerves, deep breathing exercises and mediation are also great help aids.
Avoid aisle seats on planes
When we have a choice, many of us opt for the aisle seat on a plane. Unfortunately, you may be exposed to more germs when seated on the aisle. Those coming and going to the restroom while likely pass by you on the aisle as well as tend to touch the seats as they go, therefore possibly spreading germs.
Protect your skin
A painful sunburn may put a damper on your trip, especially if you’re planning to be outdoors a lot. Remember an umbrella, hat and sunscreen with an SPF of 30+. Remember that you recover from a sunburn quickly, but skin cancer risk remains forever.
Pack a first aid kit
No one needs the added stress of needing first aid when they are in a new area where they are unsure where to obtain supplies or maybe don’t speak the language. Think through what medications you may need for common ailments you are prone to as well as what you are more likely to experience in the climate and during the activities you plan on participating in.
Beware of questionable food and drink
Adventurous travelers are tempted to try all a new place has to offer. However, only eat meat that is thoroughly cooked and steaming hot when served. Also, avoid raw vegetables, dairy products sold by smaller vendors, and dairy products left unrefrigerated. Research water safety. Tap water may not be safe to drink. Don’t forget to avoid ice cubes in countries where tap water should not be consumed as well.
Take it easy, but not too easy
You may look forward to trading a normally hectic schedule for lounging for a week on the beach, but you will feel better and more rested if you allow for some physical activity in your day. Consider visiting the hotel gym or doing some basic exercises in your hotel room. Not only does exercise aid the immune system, but it also releases feel-good endorphins. You may also opt to explore the local sights by foot or bike instead of car. Consider participating in a more strenuous activity like taking a hike or signing up to learn one of the area’s popular activities.
Wherever you travel this season, we hope you have an amazing and healthy experience! Need to speak to a physician for health concerns related to your trip? Call our Physician Referral line!
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