The basics of overseas travel: preparing your personal health kit

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When preparing for a travel abroad, people most often neglect to pack a first aid kit. Oftentimes, sicknesses, accidents, and injuries ruin even the most meticulously planned vacation.

Unprecedented situations such as those listed above just emphasize the importance of preparing and bringing your own personal health kit.

There are 2 things you need to keep in mind:

1. Know where you’re going

If you’re traveling to an urban city that has easily accessible clinics and pharmacies, then you don’t need to pack so much for your health kit. But if you’re going on a nature-filled vacation, then it’s best to arm yourself with supplies.

Some people choose to ignore carrying essential medical supplies and instead chooses to go extreme with their nature adventure. Not every herb found in the forest corresponds to your ailment – that or you’re watching too much wilderness survival TV shows. It’s better to take a med kit over any potential healing herb anytime. Unless of course you want to cut off your vacation early.

2. Know yourself

Existential as it sounds, it’s best to prepare for a surprise onslaught of allergies if you’re known to have them, for menstrual cramps if you’re traveling during your period, for motion sickness when traveling by plane or boat, and for whatever health condition you have.

As the saying goes, it’s better to over-prepare and carry stuff you might not need than to prepare just enough and end up missing something you actually need.

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Prepare yourself with the basics:

  • Band-aids, bandages, and medical tape
  • Vitamins
  • Antiseptic or disinfectant
  • Antibiotic ointments
  • Specific pills and tablets: anti-motion sickness tablets, antihistamines for allergies, loperamide for diarrhea, paracetamol for headaches and pain, throat lozenges, cough medicine, and sleep aid.
  • Thermometer, travel scissors, safety pins, and tweezers
  • Mosquito repellant
  • Alcohol
  • Eye drops

If you are diagnosed with a chronic medical condition such as diabetes, don’t forget to pack the sufficient medication as well as a copy of the doctor’s prescription.

A personal travel health kit is the best weapon against sudden injuries and illnesses. The good thing is that you don’t have to drive all the way to a pharmacy to get it. All these essential travel supplies are available from an online pharmacy for your peace of mind and convenience. You save gas too! Total win-win.

Also, some countries require foreign visitors to bring an International Certificate of Vaccination, also known as Yellow Card. Take proper precaution and contact the foreign embassy of the country you’re visiting regarding their current entry requirements. 

Some additional tips for packing:

  1. Pack your essentials in a light, waterproof bag
  2. Pack more than enough medicine for your stay
  3. Choose tablets over liquids, and sachets over tubes

It’s also a good practice to do personal research about practical tips (like what you’re doing now) before travelling overseas. General medication tips found online will help you get the most out of your vacation.

Whatever you do, just remember to know where you’re going, and to know yourself. These are your two main concerns when packing for the right medical supply.

Keep these things in mind and you won’t ever need to worry!

What other necessities should you pack to ensure your safety? Let us know!

About Simon Petersen 506 Articles
Travel blogger, journalist, sports and movie fiend. Chronicling the life and times of a Kiwi at home and abroad.

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