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How to Avoid Getting Sick While Traveling

Updated on April 7, 2015

How to Avoid Getting Sick While Traveling

Pretty soon families will once again be getting ready for their spring and summer vacations. This article will focus on how to avoid getting sick while traveling. This is always a fun time for most families but admittedly it can be a little stressful too. One thing that you certainly don’t want to have to worry about while traveling is getting sick and it ruining your fun time off with your loved ones. I have some good friends that just had their first trip to Las Vegas for a couples getaway. Unfortunately for my friend’s husband got a bad bug of some sort while he was there and it pretty much ruined their whole trip. This was really a big disappointment for these nice folks that he got sick and ruined their big trip. You may think there is nothing that you can do to prevent something like this from happening but there are several things that you can do to at least reduce your risk of getting ill while traveling.

Hotel Rooms Have Hidden Germs

Have you ever seen any of the reality television shows about bad hotels or hotels that are struggling and not doing well? There was one show that my wife and I watched a few times where Chef Gordan Ramsey of the Fox Network show “Hell’s Kitchen” had another show called “Hotel Hell”. This show and others usually have the host go into a room with a black light that shows all of the human body fluids on the bed and walls and it is just really gross. It is enough to make you want to never sleep in a hotel bed again. There are a few things you can do in your hotel room to help. You can bring your own wipes and wipe down the door knobs and light switches. One of the worst things with germs is the television remote control. A tip I saw once to help this problem is to place a zip lock bag over the remote and push the buttons through the bag. This would ensure that you would be shielded from the germs and not have to worry about all the germs. Obviously, just toss the zip lock bag away when you leave or just leave it for the maid to take care of when she cleans the room.

Don’t Let the Bedbugs Bite

Another thing you can do is to examine the sheets in your hotel room bed and lift up the mattress so you can see the underside. The reason is that you can see how clean the bed is and also whether or not the bed is infested with bed bugs. Bed bugs have become a big problem. These bugs are small, reddish-brown bugs with flat bodies. These bugs resemble very small cockroaches. There may be either brown or red stains on the sheets which would be a sign of a possible infestation in the bed you are about to sleep in. If you see any of these little creatures in your bed do NOT unpack your bags and immediately request to the hotel front desk to have a new room. You should also let them know of the infestation.

Drink Water and Stay Hydrated

Make sure that you get plenty of water while you are traveling and avoid alcohol while traveling by plane. It is believed that alcohol can weaken the immune system. Do you really need to be drunk when you get off your airplane at your destination? You could be an easy target for someone to take advantage of or harm. It is interesting to note that oversees travelers have over a 50% chance of getting sick from a travel related illness. The most common travel-related sickness is gastrointestinal infection which is usually from poorly prepared food and untreated water sources. That’s kind of scary to think about how likely it is that you will get sick as you travel overseas. A proper check up with your family doctor before you travel may be a good idea. Stay away from drinks served over ice and choose bottled drinks instead which would be less likely to have contamination.

Wash Your Hands Often

It seems simple but this may be the one most important and obvious thing that you can do to avoid getting ill. It is recommended that you wash your hand with warm soap and water for at least twenty seconds. Be sure to later thoroughly and try to get under your fingernails as best you can. It is amazing how easily germs can be transferred from your hands. Think of all the things that you might have to touch while walking through an airport. Where have all those people been and what kinds of germs might they be carrying with them and spreading to others without their knowledge?

Dry Air in Airplanes

Using saline mist spray for your nose can help keep it moist and help you avoid illness while traveling. The air inside airplane cabins can be dry and this can make it easier for germs to enter your body. A simple saline nasal spray mist can be a big help to keep your nose moist during the dry winters when everyone has the heat turned up indoors.

Travel Advisories

Pay attention to public health warnings if traveling to other countries. There may be illnesses that you are unaware of that are a problem at your destination. There may be special immunizations that you could get to help protect yourself from these threats. For travel in the states you may want to pack a medical kit for yourself your children.

Bring Your Medications With You

If you have a medical condition and are traveling outside the country it would be a good idea
to carry a letter from your doctor that describes your condition. Any medications that you bring with you should be clearly labeled in their original containers. You may want to check with the embassies of those countries to make sure that the medications are not illegal to have so you don’t get in trouble. It would also be a very good idea for you to pack an extra pair of eyeglasses if you happen to wear prescription glasses. It would not be good to be in a faraway place from home and lose your glasses and not be able to see properly. Also, if you have certain allergies or medical conditions you might want to wear a medical alert bracelet. This would let the medical folks know what your problem was so that they could help you.

Travel Safe and Healthy

These are just of the few things that you may consider doing before traveling with your family in order to ensure that you have a safe and healthy vacation. I hope that some of these things were helpful. You may check out some of the links I have listed below if you would like more information on this topic and other helpful advice.

How to Avoid Getting Sick While Traveling Poll

Which of these tips will you use to prevent illness while traveling?

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