Trouble Creators

Health Care
The Trouble Creators:

Carried by Insects-
·1 Dengue
·2 Japanese encephalitis
·3 Malaria
·4 Plague
Carried in Food or Water-
·1 Cholera
·2 Escherichia coli diarrhoea
·3 Hepatitis A
·4. Typhoid Fever
Person-to-Person Contact-
·1 Hepatitis B

Precautions to be Taken:

Do not forget to take these vaccines before you set for India or for that matter any place across the globe. Give your self enough time for these shots to take effect (aproximately four to six weeks).

  • Hepatitis A or immune globulin (IG).
  • Hepatitis B ( If one is satying longer than six months or is likely be exposed to blood, have sexual contact with the local population, or be exposed through medical treatment. It is now recommended for all infants and for children ages 11–12 years who did not receive the series as infants.)
  • Japanese encephalitis ( If visting the rulra areas during the rainy seasons and saty is longer than four weks.)
  • Rabies ( If one is exposed to wild or domestic animals.)
  • Typhoid (A must if stay is more than six weeks particulary in the rural areas.)

As needed, booster doses for tetanus-diphtheria and measles, and a one-time dose of polio for adults.

Follow these to stay healthy-

  • Wash hands often with soap and water.
  • Drink only bottled or boiled water, or carbonated (bubbly) drinks in cans or bottles. Avoid tap water, fountain drinks, and ice cubes. If this is not possible, make water safer by both filtering through an "absolute 1-micron or less" filter and adding iodine tablets to the filtered water. "Absolute 1-micron filters" are found in camping/outdoor supply stores.
  • Eat only thoroughly cooked food or fruits and vegetables you have peeled yourself.
  • If you are going to visit areas where there is risk for malaria, take your malaria prevention medication before, during, and after travel, as directed.
  • Protect yourself from insects by remaining in well-screened areas, using repellents and permethrin-impregnated mosquito nets, and wearing long-sleeved shirts and long pants from dusk through dawn.
  • To prevent fungal and parasitic infections, keep feet clean and dry, and do not go barefoot.
  • Always use latex condoms to reduce the risk of HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases.

The useful tip: Remember: Boil it, Cook it, Peel it, or Forget it.

Aviod These-

·1 Don't eat food purchased from street vendors.
·2 Don't drink beverages with ice.
·3 Don't eat dairy products unless you know they have been pasteurized.
·4 Don't share needles with anyone.
·5 Don't handle animals, avoid bites.
·6 Don't swim in fresh water. Salt water is usually safer.

When you have returned:

While on the journey itself, make a list of the places which have been visited. when you return to your home town hand over this list to your medical advisor. This will help him to determine what infections you might have contracted. If those areas have been visited which were affected by malaria, dengue or some other disease, continue taking medicines for the prescribed period. It is essential that course of medicine be completed so that there is no risk of disease making you the host.

Drinking water and preacutions to be taken:

Though authorities try their best to provide safe drinking water at the major tourist destinations bad maintainenace and poor hygine sense spoils all the good efforts. At many place even ground is not fit for drinking. In some places the iron content is more at others water is salty or the sulphate content is more in a nut shell water is not safe to drink. Thus, the only solution in sight are the mineral water bottles. But is the stay is long then bottled water is too costly further you have to depend on the supply and availabilty.

It is better to carry chlorine tablets and mix it with water before drinking. The best way to avoid water borne desiases is to boli water for five minutes before drinking. Filtering water removes the larger impurities but it can not remove the virues, bacteria and amobea which are dissloved. They can be fully removed but their intensity gets minimum after water is bolied.

Hepatitis and gastro-enteritis are the main water borne diseases. But coli, Salmonella, cholera and typhoid are also caused by drinking unsafe water. These diseases are fatal if not treated in time and properly. If these trouble shooters are treated in early stages then they can be easily be controlled but if left uncared then they become major problem and can spoil the whole journey.

Drinking fountain breverages is also hazardous as the nozzles are exposed to flies and dust. Again the water used in preparing them is often not clean. Never use ice from the market in your drinks. you never know what water has been used in preparing the ice. Beer is ofcourse the safest drink. Favourite brands are Kingfisher, pinkPelican, Danzburg and Thunderboolt. Don't drink the ones that have 8% alchohol in them.
If nothing is available drink hot tea or coffee. It's a relatively germ free bevarage.

Food and Precautions to be taken:

Another major cause for bad health condition during travelling is contaminated food. Nomatter how hard you try it is very difficult to avoid cantaminated food while travelling. There are some precautions one should take while eating in journey. Never eat cut fruits or food which is kept in open. Even while eating fruits make sure that it is properly washed. Never take food from vendors and road side shops. Eat only packed food or from good resturants.

Always take well cooked and warm food especially if you are having non vegetarian stuff. Insure that your hands are properly cleaned with soap before eating. Consider not using toilet paper, and washing yourself the way the locals do. Fill the water pitcher with your right hand, only. Pour with your right hand and use your left to scrub a little. It is much cleaner than toilet paper. You kind of get a bath every time you use the toilet, and no irritation from the toilet paper.

A lot of people claim to know exactly which meal made them sick. They are fooling themselves; it may have sent them over the edge, but the illness is a cumulative result of many factors. Someone else will eat the same food and not feel a thing.

Dealing with Diarrhea (dehydration):

Diarrhea is a bacterial disease which is mainly caused due to contaminated water. Diarrhea is fatal if not traeted in time. Diarrhea leads to acute dehydration and loss of body fluid. Sometimes high temperatures and humid climate also lead to dehydration. This is very common among foreigner particulary those comming from cold countries. Loss of body fluids leads to cramps and unconciousness which subsequently impairs proper functioning of the body.

Treating dehydration is very simple. One can prepare a salt sugar solution by himself (It is simply a mixture of sugar, potassium salt, and table salt. If you can't find it, sugar and plain table salt does almost as well) or get some ORS packets from the health centers. These packets are free of cost. In case of dehyderation give the patient the sugar salt solution at regualr intervals and if condition does not improve then take him to doctor. In case of diarrhea one has to take some prescribed antibiotics along with sugar salt solution. It is recommended to carry anti dehydration medicines while travelling to any place.

It is still possible to get amoebic dysentary in India, so recognize the symptoms. For those unfamiliar with this yucky affliction, it's different from plain old diarrhoea; usually, there is blood involved and no fever (if fever is present, it's bacillic dysentary and will either go away by itself or can be treated with antibiotics). If left untreated, it can get very nasty. As for treatment ask for metradiazenole (sic?), often known as Flagyl or Flagyl-forte. You don't need a prescription for just about anything in most of Asia. Get ten days worth (40 tablets) and eat them after eating because they're very hard on the stomach. Drink NO alcohol, or you'll throw up. If your urine turns brown, don't worry. That's apparently a side-effect of the drug. It is always good to be on the safe side.

Sun Burns:

Being a tropical country sunburns is very common in India. Whether it is summers or winters if proper care is not taken you may land up having rashes and burnt skin all over. It is better to apply sun screen lotion before going out. Though the concept of sunscreen lotion is not very popular, one can find them in big cities. But in smaller towns they might not be availble so it is better if carry them with you. Remmember tanning on beaches and getting skin burnt are two different things.

Women Stuff:

In the big cities sanitary napkins and pads are popular but in smaller places even the concept might be absent. Make sure that you have adequate stock for those days. Also, in India tampoons are not very popular so get them well in advance because you might land up in messy situations at times. Carry your stress releving pills too.

Travelling may bring sickness of various kinds but make sure to minimise them. Seasicknes or throwing up can not be helped but if you feel better by taking some medicine or other make sure that you carry them along. Because it helps to (a) stay generally healthy and not too exhausted---this is extremely important but not generally realized; and (b) try to reduce your germ intake whenever reasonably possible, but never worry about totally eliminating it since it's impossible.

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