Top 10 Travel Health Tips to Stay Healthy this Spring Break

Travel Health Specialist Dr. Gio Miletto and adventure travel bloggers from
The Planet D share their best advice on staying healthy

TORONTO, Feb. 2, 2015 /CNW/ - Canadians continue to travel abroad despite international health scares, according to a recent Statistics Canada Report.* Travel Health expert
Dr. Gio Miletto and Adventure Travel Bloggers Dave and Deb from The Planet D share their Top 10 Travel Health Tips to help ensure travellers stay healthy this upcoming travel season.

1.

Travel Vaccines – Vaccines protect against a variety of diseases when travelling.




"Plan ahead and find out what vaccines you'll need before you embark on your journey. Some are required for entry into certain countries, and some need to be taken a few
weeks in advance," says Dr. Miletto. "Travellers' diarrhea protection, hepatitis A and B are top of the list for any destination.  Also yellow fever and typhoid fever may be required for South America, Asia and Africa."



2.

Travel Health Kit – Bring along a travel kit of over-the-counter treatments including
anti-diarrheal medication, antihistamine, anti-motion sickness medication, pain relievers, antacid, anti-bacterial ointment, hand sanitizer, Band-aids, aloe gel for sunburns, and Moleskin for blisters.



3.

Medical Insurance – Check with your credit card company or your employer's insurance plan prior to travel to see if you are covered for travel medical insurance, or look into buying it directly.




"I had to be air-ambulanced out of the Amazon after I broke my back, and I was incredibly thankful for the medical insurance. I didn't have to worry at all," says Dave Bouskill, The Planet D.



4.

Water – Water that is safe for consumption may not always be readily available in some parts of the world. In most cases, make sure you only drink bottled or treated water, even for brushing your teeth.




"Also watch for ice; we got very sick in Vietnam drinking delicious iced tea that had ice made from contaminated water," says Deb Corbeil, The Planet D.



5.

Insect Bites – Mosquitoes and other bugs are common ways to spread disease. Prevent bites from ticks, fleas and mosquitoes by wearing repellent. Long-sleeved tops and pants also provide added protection.




"We travel with a small portable mosquito net that can easily roll up to the size of a t-shirt," says Corbeil.



6.

Food – Avoid salads in countries where water sanitation may be an issue, as well as any unpasteurized dairy products or raw foods that may be washed in water. Stick to fruit that can be peeled, such as bananas, oranges, pineapples and mangoes. In most cases, it's best to avoid street food unless it's freshly prepared at a high temperature, right in front of you.




"As much as it is great to sample the local fare, always look for restaurants that have lots of people so you know the food is fresh and they are continuously cooking," says Corbeil.



7.

Sun/Heat – Definitely wear sunscreen and a hat for dealing with direct heat. Watch out for signs of heat stroke, which is a common issue for travellers in humid and tropical climates. Don't forget to drink a lot of bottled water to keep you hydrated and cool.



8.

Jet Lag – Switch to local time as soon as you get on the plane, and try your best to stay on this schedule. At the destination, stay up and go to bed at your normal hours, take a walk or get some sun if you need to keep awake.




"Travelling can be disruptive to your body's normal rhythm. Get a good night's sleep before you travel and consider taking low-dose melatonin at night to help you adjust," says Dr. Miletto.



9.

Altitude – At high-altitude destinations, it is important to acclimatize. Don't over-exert yourself with physically demanding activities initially, take altitude sickness medication, keep hydrated, and stay warm until you adapt.



10.

Protective Gear – Adventure is always a big part of travelling the world, but always remember that safety comes first. Wear helmets when riding motorcycles, bikes or horses – even in countries that don't require them.




"I am always surprised when I see tourists riding motorcycles or mopeds without helmets in foreign countries," says Bouskill. "Usually the roads are way worse than in North America and so it is even more important to wear helmets and stay safe."

 

*Trips by Canadians to overseas countries increased 1.7% to 928,000 – November 2014.
Released January 20, 2015, Statistics Canada.

About Dr. Gio Miletto

Dr. Giovanni Miletto was born in London, U.K. and graduated from Imperial College Medical School, London. He is also a graduate of the Canadian Medical Board and College of Family Physicians of Canada. He is medical director of a large Canadian travel medicine clinic.

About The Planet D

Dave Bouskill and Deb Corbeil are well-known travel personalities in both online and mainstream media. Their highly acclaimed travel blog, The Planet D, won the 2014 Gold Medal for Best Travel Blog, and Best Photo Illustration of Travel by the Society of American Travel Writers.

SOURCE Travel + Health Information Resource

PDF available at: http://stream1.newswire.ca/media/2015/02/02/20150202_C7483_PDF_EN_11667.pdf

For further information: or to request an interview: Freda Colbourne, Travel + Health Information Resource, (416) 560-7794, colbournef@gmail.com; Gabby Agoncillo, Travel + Health Information Resource, (416) 481-1175, gabby@snack.is

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