3 Common Health Challenges Associated With Travelling and How to Take Care of Them

by Julia on April 3, 2018

On the list of common problems travellers dread and sometimes have to surmount, health ranks high. It is often the woe of travellers. If not taken care of, it can completely destabilize or thwart the entire purpose of travelling.

A smart traveller doesn’t just get carried away with excitement about their new destination, they make sure to be fully prepared against any emergencies that may occur on the trip, particularly health risks.

The standard procedure to take care of travel health emergencies is to take a good travel insurance plan. However, besides that, there are personal steps you can take to remedy the situation or use as first aid before you get any comprehensive, quality medic care.

1. Respiratory problems

A typical respiratory problem a traveler could encounter is the common cold. It is caused by both bacteria and virus. Headache, fatigue, muscle ache, fevers (slight or severe) and runny nose are some of the common symptoms of respiratory diseases.

These symptoms often lead to a general body weakness or restlessness. The situation may be aggravated by an unfriendly weather condition in the new location.  As such, it may become almost impossible for the traveller to focus on anything, let alone achieve his or her primary goal of travelling.

How can you take care of respiratory problems while on a trip? The first thing to do is to drink enough water. This will help regulate the body temperature. Taking paracetamol or any other analgesics will help take care of the symptoms like fever, headache and muscle pain. If the symptoms persist after three to four days, it is advisable to seek medical help.

2. Malaria

Malaria is a common disease in the tropics, particularly Africa. Anyone can contact this common through mosquito bite, mosquito being the certified causative agent. The disease comes with several symptoms such as fever, headache, nausea and vomiting, body pain, and in severe cases, coma and diarrhea.

For anyone not associated with the diseases, these symptoms can be very frightening. Sincerely, malaria is the last disease you want to encounter while on a trip, but it is one of the most common depending on the country or region.

In spite of how severe malaria may be, it may be one of the easiest to treat. In a case where the illness has already manifested, taking a good anti-malaria drug is the best cure. However, you can prevent or minimise the risk of mosquito bites with the use of an insecticide or a mosquito net.

3. Food allergy

There are those whose bodies react negatively to certain foods. These people are said to be allergic to those foods. Travellers run into the problem of eating foods they are allergic to usually because they want to try something new. Eating the kind of food one is allergic to can seriously put one in a bad state. It can either trigger off or worsen other abnormal health conditions, and needs to be avoided.

The consequence of eating allergic food is better avoided than treated. It’s best to know the kind of foods your body reacts against and avoid them by all means. Sometimes, the food isn’t be bad in itself, and it’s only that your body system is not comfortable with certain elements in the food. If, for instance, your body is allergic to gluten, then it is advised you stick only to gluten-free food while on a trip.


Staying healthy is paramount at all time. The opposite, which is ill-health, is undesirable whether you’re at home or on a trip. But, it gets worse when you’re on a trip.

To add to the tips given above, travellers should always research about their prospective place of travel before taking off. This can help them understand what they’re likely to encounter and get prepared ahead of time so they can stay healthy throughout their trip.

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