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Travel Health

Travel Health

The enjoyment and amazement of travelling can be hindered if you unfortunately fall ill as you try to adjust to the new living conditions, climate and cultures. As such we have complied a travel health guide so that you remain fit and well throughout your trip.

Please note that it is very important that you have the latest and most accurate information regarding travel health for the region which you are planning to visit. The only personnel who are qualified to provide you with details regarding this are your family doctor or specialists from a clinic related to travel health.

Health Advice
Sun Gate Tours is not exactly specific about health advice and does not have many details. You have to contact a specialized doctor regarding this. However, our trip guides will still provide you with information on all vaccines that are compulsory or recommended. We also tell our clients to take malarial prophylaxis if they are traveling to areas where malaria is very common.

You should keep in mind that there are many sources for information on travel health and so you may come across conflictions. As such, we recommend you to ensure that your sources are fully qualified in the field.

Water Purification
No matter what region you are visiting, clean and pure drinking water is essential for good health. For most of our trips, we do make arrangements so that boiled, bottled or purified water will be available to you at all times. However, if you are traveling to a remote area, you may have to find a water purification means by yourself. If this is applicable to your destination, it will be clearly mentioned in the travel notes.

Moreover, if you are traveling to a developing region or into remote locations, you may be subjected to a higher risk of non-severe stomach infections. Our trip guide does state the necessary precautions in this regard, which you will have to follow. Despite this, even the most careful people of you might pick up a few viruses. The best thing that you can do is to maintain personal hygiene, drink pure water and eat clean food. You can also keep dehydration salts with you to accelerate your recovery if you unfortunately fall ill.

Fitness and Training
A question which we are asked often is about the required fitness levels or the training level which an individual may need. If your booked trip lies in the upper range of your abilities, you will have to prepare yourself. However, unfortunately, we cannot help you much in this regard because only you are aware of your fitness level. As such, you will have to prepare accordingly with the available options.

If you are going to an area that has a high altitude, your acclimatizing capabilities will gave a greater effect on your progress when compared to your fitness level. However if you are not fit or have not prepared enough, your chances are not improved.

While training yourself, the best thing you can do is to practice in an environment that is very close to the reality of the place where you are headed. You cannot rely on your squash game if you have to prepare yourself for hiking long miles on the steepest slopes. True you cannot exactly get a replication of the UK mountains, but your preparation should still have similar ascents and descents.

If you are not sure about the trek difficulty or your fitness level, please talk it out with one of our representatives or refer to the grading system.

Good Health Practices
Please be sure that you are following the advice of your doctor at all times. You should visit a travel clinic a few months in advance before your trip is due. This will ensure that all the shots and vaccination have enough time before they become effective.

Other Guidelines
Whenever you are on a tour, there are several things which you can do to stay healthy and enjoy the trip to the utmost.

• Wash your hands once in a while as often as you can or use a hand sanitizer frequently. Ponder over the number of surfaces on which you put your hands throughout the day such as door handles, public transport vehicles and so on. You do not which of these are infected by germs that can enter your body.
• Please try not to touch your eyes, mouth and nose. In some cases, this is unavoidable such as when you have to blow the nose, rub your eyes or cough. In all these situations, thoroughly wash your hands before touching.
• Blow your nose if you have to. This will eject all debris and other foreign entities out of your body like viruses and germs.
• When you sneeze or cough, be sure to put a tissue over your nose and mouth. After usage, throw these away to reduce your chances of infection.
• Take vitamins if you feel there is a need. While you can take vitamins at anytime, this is particularly so when you are ill. You can take any vitamin that you like, but be sure that it includes vitamin C so that the immune system of your body can be strengthened.
• Try to stay away from individuals who are sick. Also make sure that you thoroughly wash your hands and face when you leave them.
• Eat nutritious and energizing food. Your body needs energy even when you are well, so when you are sick, you obviously need increased amounts.

Your Personal Medical or First Aid Kit
Whether there are tours are to remote areas or inhabited regions, our guides have obtained the required medical first aid training to keep you healthy and hearty. During all the trips, they carry a first aid kit that suffices in most circumstances. Despite this, we would still recommend you to carry a small personal first aid kit with you that you can use when the need arises. You may have to obtain prescriptions from your doctor before you can buy some of the items.

At the end of this page, we have provided a checklist that can help you in preparing an emergency kit for yourself. The frequency of how much you will need this kit depends on the activities that you perform and on the areas that you are visiting.

If you are unsure about anything and cannot figure out all medical items that you may need to carry with you, please take advice from your physician or a travel clinic.

A basic checklist is given here. Please note that this is only meant to serve as a guide and is by no means easy or complete.

• Pain relievers like aspirin or paracetamol
• Tablets that can be given in the case of allergies, bites and stings
• Cold and general flu medications
• Motion sickness medication
• Multivitamins tablets – you will need these only if your trips are long to places where you may not be able to consume a balanced diet
• Throat lozenges
• Antiseptics solutions that can be used for cleaning minor wounds
• Antiseptic creams or ointments that you can apply to wounds and stings
• Medical tape – Micropore is an example
• Materials for dressing up a wound – crepe bandages, gauze swabs, OpSite, Steristrips and any other related items
• General items like scissors, tweezers and safety pins – if you have to board a plane, you will not be able to keep scissors in your cabin luggage
• Wound and blister patches like sticking plasters
• Diethyl toluamide or a similar product that can keep insects away
• Sting relief product
• Imodium or any other medicine for treating diarrhea
• Eye and ear drops
• Sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30
• Thermometer

Online Resources
There are several sources on the Internet that provide you with detailed information about travel health. The World Health Organization or WHO has published a book by the name of International Travel and Health that can be of great help to you (www.who.int/ith/). The book is revised yearly and you can read it for free. Another notable website is the MD Travel Health (www.mdtravelhealth.com) which will also provide you with the details you need.

You should also check your governmental websites on travel health if it exists.
Australia (www.dfat.gov.au/travel/)
Canada (www.travelhealth.gc.ca)
UK (www.doh.gov.uk/traveladvice/)
USA (www.cdc.gov/travel/)