Avoiding illness on your travels

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Travelling should be about relaxation, inspiration and enjoyment, and there is not much that will take the spring out of your step like falling ill. With this in mind here are a number of simple steps you can take to safeguard against sickness.

Tread lightly around water…

Before travelling always be sure to check out how safe it is to drink local water sources. Remember your ice-cubes and salads could well pose a risk and if you’re in any doubt be sure to stick to sealed bottled water. If you’re travelling to a remote destination a water purification kit would be a useful addition to your luggage, providing you with essential piece of min

….and also around food

When travelling one of the greatest temptations you’ll come across is likely to be the range of new and exotic foods available. Indulging can certainly be a joy, however, caution is advised, particularly when it comes to foods with which you’re unfamiliar, and chicken and fish. If possible double check how well cooked your food is before eating and try to steer clear of unclean restaurants and vendors.

Monitor your alcohol consumption

For many the chance to sip Pina Coladas by the pool is what a holiday is all about, however, over-indulgence, coupled with high temperatures can be a recipe for disaster. Drinking too much can cause you to become dehydrated and to lose track of time and your senses. Whether you’re enjoying a bold red wine in Tuscany or a chilled Mojito in Havana, always be sure to respect your limits and to have water on hand.

Be careful in the sun

Sitting on the beach soaking up rays can be a pleasure, but it can also lead to dehydration, sunburn and a host of other ailments, all bought on in the name of bronzing. Minimise these risks by liberally applying sun cream, keep your fluids topped up and be sure to take in some shade throughout the day. When it comes to tanning, slow and steady is the way to go.

Speak to your doctor and guard against diseases

One thing all travellers should do is check out whether their destination requires any kind of preventative measures i.e. vaccinations, before travelling. The NHS Fit for Travel website is a particularly useful source, providing up-to-date information on the full spectrum of tropical diseases. While websites are a useful guide, it is also worthwhile speaking to your GP and ensuring that you have the most advanced protection possible.

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