When it comes to protecting your health on holiday, preparation is key. There is nothing worse than falling ill in a foreign country and being forced to navigate an unfamiliar healthcare system on your own or disrupting the travel plans of the entire group. Continue reading to familiarise yourself with a number of handy tips and tricks to protect your health on holiday.
1. Do your research
Whether you are travelling to a brand-new country for the first time or returning to your favourite travel destination, you must do your research ahead of time. This includes researching common diseases, climate risks, dangerous animals, the possibility of altitude sickness, and emergency healthcare costs for non-residents. This information is readily available online and can prevent you from having to establish an emergency back-up plan in the moment.
2. Apply sunscreen
If you are visiting a country with a hot climate, you must apply sunscreen on a regular basis. Even if weather conditions are mild or dull, the sun’s UV rays can still penetrate through cloud and reach ground level. Wearing lightweight clothing can also cool you down quicker and prevent you from overheating. Sun-related illnesses are one of the most common reasons travellers end up requiring urgent medical care abroad. While a tan may top your list of priorities on holiday, the disadvantages of excess sun exposure far outweigh the benefits. Staysure offer medical travel insurance for those looking to alleviate the burden of medical fees and have peace of mind on holiday.
3. Rehydrate regularly
Regardless of whether you are jetting off on an adventure holiday or a relaxing beach stay, you must stay rehydrate on a regular basis. Dehydration is a leading cause of heat exhaustion and can trigger a number of serious health conditions if left untreated. If you are thirsty, you may already be dehydrated. By carrying a bottle of water with you at all times and refilling as necessary, you can lower your body temperature and boost your energy levels throughout the day. You must also research whether or not the local tap water is safe to drink beforehand. If in doubt, stick to bottled water.
4. Limit your alcohol intake
While a holiday is a great excuse for a celebration, you must take care to limit your alcohol intake. Excessive or sudden binge drinking can cause a wide range of health problems that may put a dampener on your trip. In hot climates, alcohol poses extra risks. As a diuretic, it can speed up the process of dehydration and surge your body temperature to dangerous levels. To protect your health, only drink in licensed bars or restaurants and do not exceed the recommended 14 units per week. Knowing when to stop can be the difference between a good time and an unexpected, and costly, trip to the emergency room.
5. Exercise when you can
Holidays are designed for relaxation but that doesn’t mean you should ditch your health and fitness routine as soon as you set foot on the tarmac. Most hotels are equipped with a gym and spa to allow travellers to continue their daily workout routine even whilst on holiday. A walk around the local area or a hiking excursion is also a great way to get your steps in whilst enjoying the sights.
To ensure your holiday runs as smoothly as possible, you must take a number of steps to protect your health ahead of time. This includes doing your research, applying sunscreen at regular intervals throughout the day, rehydrating regularly, limiting your alcohol intake, and exercising if and when you can.