There are several diseases of concern for travelers for which there is no vaccine or medicine to prevent infection. Among these are some viral infections, sexually transmitted diseases , and parasitic infections. Many viral infections can be spread by biting insects such as ticks or mosquitoes. These include serious infections like hemorrhagic fevers, viral infections that cause high fever, and bleeding. While epidemics have been rare, Ebola virus has spread in an unprecedented way in recent years, in certain areas of Africa and beyond.
Ebola has been associated with eating wild-caught bats, monkeys, and other animals. Most travelers do not encounter these types of viral hemorrhagic fevers. Dengue fever occurs throughout the world in tropical areas. Symptoms of dengue fever are high fever, severe headache and joint pain , and a drop in blood pressure ; occasionally, bleeding hemorrhage can occur in people who are reinfected. Chikungunya fever is native to Africa and Asia but has rapidly spread into the Caribbean in the same areas as dengue.
Spread by the same mosquitoes, it causes high fever, severe joint pain , and may be indistinguishable from dengue; fever resolves after a few days. Severe joint pain may last for several weeks, but it leaves no permanent joint damage. The key to preventing these infections is to follow insect precautions see "What can I do to avoid insect bites? Sexually transmitted diseases remain common and can be acquired anywhere in the world. HIV is a risk everywhere and remains incurable. Gonorrhea , chlamydia , and syphilis remain common.
The only sure way to prevent disease is to abstain from sexual intercourse. Correct use of condoms will reduce risk as well as unintended pregnancy. HPV vaccines now available will reduce the risk of acquiring infection with the human papillomavirus virus that causes genital warts and cervical cancer. Parasites occur in most areas of the world but are especially common in tropical and subtropical regions.
Some are spread by eating contaminated food see "What is safe to eat and drink while traveling? Most travelers do not get parasitic infections, but those who are going into rural areas of developing countries should ask their doctors about parasites they might encounter. Infectious-disease outbreaks occur periodically, and officials may recommend additional precautions.
Examples have included outbreaks of bovine spongiform encephalitis mad cow disease or severe acute respiratory syndrome SARS. Travelers should check the CDC web site to obtain health and risk information specific to their destination country. CDC also has specific advice for special groups and situations http: What is safe to eat and drink while traveling? What can I do to avoid insect bites? What should be in my travel first-aid kit or medicine kit?
What are the medical concerns with jet lag? Jet lag happens when travelers cross several time zones and disrupt their normal sleep -wake cycle. To reduce the duration and the symptoms of jet lag, try to be outside when the sun is up. It may make for a very long or short first day, but it will help you adjust more quickly. Some travelers also try to change their sleep -wake habits before they leave.
Medicines are available that can promote sleep, but there are few studies on how well they work with jet lag. Zolpidem Ambien is a prescription sedative that promotes sleep. Another group of prescription drugs known as benzodiazepines also promotes sleep, but they may have more side effects, including temporary amnesia. Melatonin is a natural hormone available as an herbal preparation in the United States.
Doses of approximately 5 mg have been shown to induce sleep.http://panel.hipwee.com/35229-the-best.php
Melatonin is available over the counter. What if I have a medical condition or a chronic disease? Careful preparation will allow most travelers with medical conditions to have a safe and enjoyable trip. See your physician before traveling to be sure your understand how to manage your condition while traveling. In some cases, an exercise regimen may be recommended to get in shape before the trip. It is important to check with your health-insurance provider to determine what is covered in the destination country. Travelers with diabetes may need to adjust their insulin -dosing schedule if they cross several time zones.
Frequent monitoring of blood sugar glucose by finger stick is usually recommended. Remember to carry insulin in your carry-on baggage otherwise it will freeze in the cargo hold. An identification bracelet showing that you have diabetes is also recommended. Carry a source of sugar in case your blood glucose drops. Remember that exercise may cause blood sugar to dip, so always carry your supplies on hikes, etc. Finally, keep up with your fluids. Hydration can help avoid complications if your blood sugar jumps. Travelers with heart disease should carry a recent electrocardiogram and a list of all current medications.
Medications should be kept in carry-on luggage. If you have a pacemaker , you should know the name of the company that made it and how to contact someone if it stops working. Travelers with unstable heart disease unstable angina , severe heart failure , recent heart attack , or unstable heart rhythm should delay travel until their condition is stable.
Travelers who have problems with their immune system due to active cancer , chemotherapy , or AIDS may encounter special problems. In general, vaccines made from live organisms are usually avoided in people with significantly impaired immune systems. Even non-live travel-appropriate vaccines may not work as well as usual, but they are still beneficial and should be given. Consider delaying travel until the immune system is back to normal, if this is possible.
Consultation with a disease specialist and a travel-medicine specialist before departure is strongly recommended. Blood clots may pose a risk to certain travelers, especially on long flights or periods of immobility. Discuss your risk with your doctor, and consider wearing compression or support stockings on your trip.
Travelers with disabilities should know that accommodations will vary widely between and within countries. The Department of Transportation can assist with getting accommodations on airplanes Service animals such as guide dogs are subject to quarantine regulations and may not be allowed to enter some countries. A broad array of special situations and common travel health topics are addressed by CDC http: What if I'm traveling while pregnant? Pregnant women should consult with their obstetrician before travel. If available, a consultation with a travel medicine clinic is also recommended.
Live vaccines are usually avoided in pregnancy. An up to date flu shot is safe and important, because flu can be very serious in pregnancy, and flu circulates at different times throughout the world. Some medications must also be avoided.
This may put pregnant women at higher risk for getting sick in a foreign country. Blood clots are also more likely during pregnancy, especially with prolonged immobility and air travel. Pregnant women should also be aware that the quality of obstetrical care in foreign countries varies considerably.
It is best to have the name of a reputable clinic or hospital on hand. Women in the third trimester should consider delaying travel until after delivery. Check with your health-insurance provider in advance to determine what is covered in the destination country. Diarrhea, some types of hepatitis, and malaria can be especially severe in pregnant women. Follow food, water, and insect precautions. Avoid areas with malaria if at all possible, and take medications as directed. What about traveling with children? Some vaccinations and medications are not recommended for children.
This means that the risk or severity of certain diseases is increased in children. Diarrhea is more common in children because so much ends up in their mouths.
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Children can quickly become dehydrated. Make sure that your child drinks plenty of fluids. Consider adding an oral rehydration solution to your medical kit. Children are attracted to animals and are more likely to get bitten. Bite wounds may become infected or transmit rabies.
Keep children away from animals. Newborns and infants are at special risk because they are easily dehydrated and many vaccines and medications are contraindicated in this age group. Breastfeeding will help reduce the risk of diarrhea. There are limited options for malaria prevention in infants. Around the world, malaria remains one of the major causes of death in children.
Most health insurance policies have very limited coverage outside the home country, and your portion of the cost may be much more than it would be at home. Some may not cover travel-related care at all, or not cover emergencies related to high-risk activities. You may also be more comfortable with familiar health care in familiar surroundings, and being seriously ill away from home and family may can add an unanticipated and heavy financial burden, as well as psychological stress.
Furthermore, most care will require up front cash or credit payment or not accept health insurance. If you have a chronic disease, immune deficiency, or are pregnant in the third trimester, it may be especially beneficial, but anyone traveling outside the continental U. This type of coverage is usually inexpensive compared to the cost of an unexpected health emergency. Most out of country health emergencies are related to motor-vehicle accidents and trauma , rather than health issues.
Department of State can provide information on health care and medical emergencies when traveling abroad http: Travel safety and health alerts. Keep current on travel warnings and alerts related to crime, civil unrest, or terrorism by checking with the U. State Department for current travel alerts and warnings http: Bureau of Consular Affairs Register your itinerary and contact information with the U.
Consulate office at your destination https: Where can I find additional information? What is pancreatitis and what causes it? Learn facts about pancreatitis, symptoms, signs, and how pancreatitis is treated. When you travel, how do you decide what is safe to eat or drink? What types of food or beverages do you avoid? Do you travel internationally? Have you visited a doctor or received vaccinations beforehand? Please share your experience. Problem Foods to Avoid Find a local Family Physician in your town Why should travelers see a physician before they leave on a trip?
Traveler's diarrhea Malaria Meningitis and encephalitis Yellow fever Hepatitis A Typhoid fever Polio Cholera What about diseases for which there is no vaccine or preventive medication? Healthcare When Traveling Abroad Many international travelers may be surprised to learn that they have no health insurance coverage for illnesses or injuries that must be treated during their trip abroad. Take the Pancreatitis Quiz. Problem Foods to Avoid. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Oxford University Press; Related Article Pancreatitis Quiz: Test Your Medical IQ. What's the most important item in your kit? Fever is part of the body's own disease-fighting arsenal; rising body temperatures apparently are capable of killing off many disease-producing organisms. Routine vaccines Make sure you are up-to-date on routine vaccines before every trip. Most travelers Get travel vaccines and medicines because there is a risk of these diseases in the country you are visiting.
Hepatitis A CDC recommends this vaccine because you can get hepatitis A through contaminated food or water in Argentina, regardless of where you are eating or staying. Typhoid You can get typhoid through contaminated food or water in Argentina. Some travelers Ask your doctor what vaccines and medicines you need based on where you are going, how long you are staying, what you will be doing, and if you are traveling from a country other than the US.
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Hepatitis B You can get hepatitis B through sexual contact, contaminated needles, and blood products, so CDC recommends this vaccine if you might have sex with a new partner, get a tattoo or piercing, or have any medical procedures. Rabies Although rabies can be found in dogs, bats, and other mammals in Argentina, it is not a major risk to most travelers.
CDC recommends this vaccine only for these groups: Travelers involved in outdoor and other activities in remote areas that put them at risk for animal bites such as adventure travel and caving. People who will be working with or around animals such as veterinarians, wildlife professionals, and researchers. People who are taking long trips or moving to remote areas in Argentina Children, because they tend to play with animals, might not report bites, and are more likely to have animal bites on their head and neck.
All travelers You should be up to date on routine vaccinations while traveling to any destination. Key Get vaccinated Eat and drink safely Prevent bug bites Keep away from animals Reduce your exposure to germs Avoid sharing body fluids Avoid non-sterile medical or cosmetic equipment. Hide Stay Healthy and Safe. Eat and drink safely. What can I do to prevent bug bites?
Cover exposed skin by wearing long-sleeved shirts, long pants, and hats. Use an appropriate insect repellent see below. Use permethrin-treated clothing and gear such as boots, pants, socks, and tents. Do not use permethrin directly on skin. Stay and sleep in air-conditioned or screened rooms. Use a bed net if the area where you are sleeping is exposed to the outdoors.
What type of insect repellent should I use? Products with one of the following active ingredients can also help prevent mosquito bites. Higher percentages of active ingredient provide longer protection. What should I do if I am bitten by bugs? Avoid scratching bug bites, and apply hydrocortisone cream or calamine lotion to reduce the itching. Check your entire body for ticks after outdoor activity. Be sure to remove ticks properly. What can I do to avoid bed bugs? Stay alert to changing weather conditions and adjust your plans if conditions become unsafe.
Prepare for activities by wearing the right clothes and packing protective items, such as bug spray, sunscreen, and a basic first aid kit. Consider learning basic first aid and CPR before travel. Bring a travel health kit with items appropriate for your activities. Heat-related illness, such as heat stroke, can be deadly. Eat and drink regularly, wear loose and lightweight clothing, and limit physical activity during high temperatures.
If you are outside for many hours in heat, eat salty snacks and drink water to stay hydrated and replace salt lost through sweating. Protect yourself from UV radiation: Be especially careful during summer months and at high elevation. Because sunlight reflects off snow, sand, and water, sun exposure may be increased during activities like skiing, swimming, and sailing.
Very cold temperatures can be dangerous. Dress in layers and cover heads, hands, and feet properly if you are visiting a cold location. Stay safe around water Swim only in designated swimming areas. Obey lifeguards and warning flags on beaches. Practice safe boating—follow all boating safety laws, do not drink alcohol if driving a boat, and always wear a life jacket.
Do not dive into shallow water. Do not swim in freshwater in developing areas or where sanitation is poor. Avoid swallowing water when swimming. Untreated water can carry germs that make you sick. To prevent infections, wear shoes on beaches where there may be animal waste. Keep away from animals. Follow these tips to protect yourself: Do not touch or feed any animals you do not know. Do not allow animals to lick open wounds, and do not get animal saliva in your eyes or mouth.
Avoid rodents and their urine and feces. Traveling pets should be supervised closely and not allowed to come in contact with local animals. If you wake in a room with a bat, seek medical care immediately. Bat bites may be hard to see. If you are bitten or scratched by an animal, immediately: Wash the wound with soap and clean water. Go to a doctor right away. Tell your doctor about your injury when you get back to the United States.
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Reduce your exposure to germs. Follow these tips to avoid getting sick or spreading illness to others while traveling: Wash your hands often, especially before eating. If you need to touch your face, make sure your hands are clean. Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve not your hands when coughing or sneezing. Try to avoid contact with people who are sick. If you are sick, stay home or in your hotel room, unless you need medical care.
Avoid sharing body fluids. Diseases can be spread through body fluids, such as saliva, blood, vomit, and semen. Use latex condoms correctly. Under the appointment tab on hipphealth. We are planning a trip to Peru in the future. My husband is traveling alone initially possibly next year. We would then be traveling as a family with a 2 year old after this. If he still contracts one of the illnesses will he have a stronger chance at beating it or could they still be potentially deadly even after the remedies?
Is the baby more susceptible to these diseases. Also, if we went for the vaccine option, how effective is the cleanse treatment? Hello I can not give medical advice here in line. I do offer travel consults you can book a time for. Homeoprophylaxis works to educate the immune system towards specific disease processes. It either renders you less susceptabile to the disease or if you get it you know how to work it through. Depending on the disease it is more sever or at risk for small children. Hi there … wonderful article btw. Thank you so much for this.
My partner is taking my two boys to Bali. Are you suggesting for disease prevention number 3 in your list that you can give those four remedies phos, Ars, Nat Mur and China in order on the same day four weeks in a row or one remedy for four weeks followed by the next remedy for four weeks etc? I have four weeks till they travel… Would that be 30c potency or c potency?
These remedies would be for Malaria yes? I am not sure if Bali has Malaria. And it depends on what time of year you are going. What is the rainy season etc. Then it would be 30 or depending if you have experience with homeopathic remedies. I would say 30 if you do not know how to use them or have never taken them. You would need to work with a homeopath there as there are many remedies it just depends on how the symptoms are.
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Typhoidinum is the nosode. Kate My son and I are traveling to Jamaica in October and I am against vaccines but I have a weak immune system being type 1 diabetic. Would this method for thypoid and hep a be good for my 6 year old son and myself? Thanks for any advice. Hello, I would say that we need some strength in the immune system for any immune system challenge. Classical homeopathy is the best way to strengthen the immune system so it is less susceptible to contracting disease.
Typhoid is a food born enterocoli bacterium that if your immune system is down you are more susceptible to contracting.
Yes HP can help to build immune system response so that your body will know what to do if it is exposed. There are other things too that will increase the health of your intestinal tract so it is less susceptible to food born illnesses. The same is true for Hep A. Hello Lavon, I am sorry to hear your body is having this hard time.
I work with homeopathy to clear the vaccines. I feel it is more effective to engage the proper immune response. Best to make an appointment to get started on fixing you up. Hello yes China has been uses for hundreds of years fro malaria. It was first homeopathic remedy.
Expat origin per is more suited to dengue. Kate, I am a second generation Homeopath from Hyderabad, India. I have two children 29 yrs, 26 yrs, who have never been vaccinated, and have used only Homeopathy since their birth till date. Wishing you great success in Homeopathy….. Prabhu AL on January 5, at Happy to hear you are all doing well.
My children are the same 29 and Brilliantly healthy with homeopathy. Hello my son will be traveling to India in January for the first time and would like some advice on what remedies he needs to take, he has only ever had homeopathic treatment throughout his life. Any advice would be gratefully received. Sherri Ohler on September 4, at 8: Hello, I am traveling to South Africa for 5 weeks, leaving the end of August, Since I only have 7 weeks until departure, how would you recommend the best protection for a moderately healthy 31 year old?
Is taking one dose per week to get them all done too much? Hello I do not give out medical advice here on line but if you would like to schedule a consultation we can set that up and we would develop a protocol for the real disease concern based on season and what you will actually be doing. The CDC gives a blanket disease recommendation but it does not mean it is pertinent for your kind of trip.
Depending on which diseases seem really important then we can make a protocol accordingly. Also depending on how long you are going for. If you would like to make an appointment please see the FEES tab for how to schedule. Thank you for writing this excellent article. I have been looking online, trying to find out whether or not I will have problems entering countries particularly USA without certificates of vaccination.
Can you hep with this? Many thanks for your time. The only issue would be is if you were in a country that has been required to have yellow fever. I think Peru is recommending now but may not require it. I am a missionary and I will be going back to Haiti this summer and bringing others with me. I know malaria and typho-malaria is active there, especially since the earthquake. What would you suggest for my medicine chest. Also, I have heard that colloidal silver is very good and from this site, phosphorous. Hi If you would like to do a consult we can arrange that. I can not give out medical advice here on line but there are some suggestions on this page.
You can purchase a travel kit form most pharmacies. My book Vaccine Free would help in many ways as a reference book. Kate, we did consult a homeopathic doctor for a yellow fever preventive. She gave us Cimic bi weekly for 3 months. Does it mean that there are other remedies that are used prophylactically for yellow fever? Thank you so much ,. Hello yes there are many remedies that can be used to treat and prevent yellow fever. These are clearly discussed in the book vaccine free. Cimicifuga is one of those remedies. Could you please clarify — 7 when doing a series of remedies repetition in alternation — is one dose of Phosphorous followed by a dose of Arsenicum, Nat Mur and China in the same week for 4 weeks, or Phosphorous one week, Nat Mur the next week etc.
Thanks for all the information. Yes it would be one dose of one remedy each week then repeat the cycle after you have finished all weeks. My German friend lives in Central Brazil and has suffered headaches since the vaccination. I am a naturopath and thought that the Nosode may be helpful for her. What do you think? Peter Rule on January 8, at 5: Hello, yes while I can not give out medical advice on line I would say the yellow fever nosode, the yellow fever vaccine nosode or a remedy to address the exact liver symptoms causing the headache Ie a remedy related to the treatment of yellow fever , would be of help.
You would need to start with drainage potencies first. Mag-sulph would help drain the liver. Also know that the vaccine is made on eggs so if there is a sensitivity to eggs avoid those for a while. As yellow fever effects the blood clotting and protein function of the liver focus treatment on these issues. Check the stools and make sure they are eliminating well, are digested in entirety and the bile function is flowing.
Hello, I want to first say how incredibly thankful and blessed I am to have found your blog.
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