Travel, especially in developing countries, changes all that. The tips below can help you avoid catching a nasty bug on your next trip.
If you're traveling to Western Europe or other developed countries, health issues are less of a concern. But if you're traveling to a developing country, you should start planning several months in advance.
When traveling in Western Europe and other developed countries, enjoy whatever you eat and drink without undue concern. But to stay healthy in developing countries, it's important to pay close attention to what you eat, drink and even wear.
Learn about specific health concerns for the country or region you're visiting, and take precautions as necessary. Below are some of the most common health concerns you'll encounter.
One of the most common travel ailments, traveler's diarrhea, is caused by ingesting contaminated food or water. Other diseases transmitted by contaminated food or water include cholera and dysentery. You can take precautions to avoid them:
Common in Central and South America, Africa, Asia and the Middle East, malaria is transmitted by infected mosquitoes. Other diseases transmitted by mosquitoes and flies include yellow fever, sleeping sickness, leishmaniasis and Japanese encephalitis.
Parasites such as worms and flukes can be transmitted by ingesting contaminated food or water or via direct contact with skin.
Some of the health risks associated with wilderness travel include sunburn, blisters, poison ivy, insects, ticks, snakebites and altitude sickness. There can also be additional health concerns related to temperature extremes—heat fatigue, heat exhaustion and heat stroke, as well as dehydration, hypothermia and frostbite.
Despite your best intentions, it's possible you could get sick on your trip, or when you get home.
By T.D. Wood
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Last updated: Wed Aug 15 17:36:38 PDT 2012
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