Tuesday, July 15, 2014

What do you need to know about travel immunizations?


Are you planning to travel this summer? Depending upon your destination, immunizations might be necessary to ensure the safety and well being of you and your family members. Check out the guidelines below and consult your healthcare practitioner prior to traveling.

What routine vaccines are suggested?

Measles-mumps-rubella (MMR)
Diptheria-tetanus-pertussis
Varicella (chickenpox)
Polio
Annual flu shot

What are the most common additional vaccines needed for travel?

Hepatitis A and/or B
Typhoid
Rabies

Check out this website, which provides comprehensive details regarding specific vaccines necessary for a variety of destinations, including travel within the country as well as abroad.

Examples of how diseases may be contracted while traveling:

Typhoid fever: You may contract this condition by eating or drinking food or water contaminated with the Salmonella Typhi bacteria while traveling. It is more common in underdeveloped parts of the world.
Rabies: You can easily contract rabies through a bite from an infected animal.
Hepatitis A: This form of hepatitis may be passed from an individual with the virus, such as a food worker, through an action as simple as improper handwashing. Foods such as fruits, vegetables, shellfish, ice and water may be contaminated, too.

Should you be concerned about adverse reactions to immunizations?

Reactions are typically rare, but they can occur.
Ask your doctor for a list of any symptoms you should be aware of that might indicate a reaction.
Call your doctor or healthcare provider immediately at any sign of distress or reaction.

Are there factors that can increase your risk of exposure to infectious disease while traveling?

Yes, according to experts at www.webmd.com, the following can put you at greater risk of becoming ill while traveling:

Visits to more rural areas, such as farms, zoos, and other animal habitats.
Engaging in outdoor activities such as hiking and backpacking.
Staying with locals.
Extended stays.

What should you take with you while traveling to ensure a safe trip?

1. A list of allergies and medications you’re taking.
2. Your doctor’s contact information.
3. A list of immunizations and the dates they were received.

What you should know before you go:

The location of the nearest hospital or clinic.
Guidelines for your insurance covering you while traveling.
How to get emergency assistance while traveling outside the U.S. Check out this site. 

Helpful travel hints:

*It’s ideal to visit your doctor 4-6 week before your trip. This will allow adequate time to receive vaccines and any medications you may require.
*Keep away from animals you meet while traveling, especially if you don’t know their health history and if they’ve been properly vaccinated.
*Choose food and drinks wisely. For instance, in some areas, it’s advisable to drink bottled water.
*Always check with your doctor before traveling if you have a compromised immune system or other health concerns.

Where can you learn more?

Check out sites such as www.webmd.com or www.cdc.gov/ta for valuable information regarding safe travel.

Be Wize & Be Healthy
-FamilyWize

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