INDIA – Care for your Health while traveling
Immunization and Health
Yellow fever certificates must be shown by travellers arriving from Africa, Latin, America and Papua New Guinea. Other shots, although not officially required, are advisable. Typhoid , Polio and tetanus are important. A gamma globulin injection for hepatitis immediately before departure is also advisable. Many countries require arrivals from India to have an up-to-date cholera vaccination.
A Vaccination against rabies is now available but you must still visit the nearest hospital immediately following any bite from a dog or monkey for a further course of injections.
Malaria is still widespread in many part of India. Advice as to which pills to take is constantly being revised but at present one suggested regime is Niva-quine (or Avloclor) twice a week and one or two paludrine daily . both courses must be continued for four to six weeks after leaving an affected area.
Most modern medicines are available over the counter in India but it is wise to have your own small reserve stock. If prescription drugs are required bring enough for the duration of your visit . It is advisable, to keep a second stock of these packed in a separate bag in case you lose your baggage.A small kit should include a remedy for ‘Delhi-belly’ (upset stomach), some antiseptic cream, lip salve, mosquito cream , suntan lotion for log days on Goa’ s beaches, water purifying tablets if bottled water is not available, elastoplasts, etc.
Many tourists develop problems on their second or third day because of ‘climate shock’ (heat exhaustion rather than contaminated food and water), ut if a upset stomach persists seek medical advise (big hotels have a doctor o call). Many people in India advise drinking lots of fluids (boiled and filtered water with a little salt ad sugar) and keeping to a diet of rice and yoghurt for a couple of days.
Be careful about following things in India about healthwise : – Drink plenty of fluids but never drink tap water. – The flask in hotel rooms contains filtered water and bottled water and now available almost every hotel. – Avoid fresh salads even in hotel- Avoid eating street food
Prepare Your Medical Kit In India good medical facilities are available in all major cities. Some of the hospital in India provides medical facilities best in the world. But it is always sensible to carry a handy medical kit with you. For the normal condition a good medical kit should include the following :
Aspirin or paracetamol (acetaminophen in the US) Useful for pain or fever.
Antihistamine, a decongestant for colds and allergies, to ease the itch from insect bites or stings and to help prevent motion sickness. There are several antihistamines on the market, all with different pros and cons (eg a tendency to cause drowsiness), so it’s worth discussing your requirements with a pharmacist or doctor. Antihistamines may cause sedation and interact with alcohol so care should be taken when using them.
Antibiotics, useful if you’re travelling well off the beaten track, but they must be prescribed and you should carry the prescription with you.
Loperamide (eg Imodium) or Lomotil which is useful for diarrhoea; prochlorperazine (eg Stemetil) or metaclopramide (eg Maxalon) for nausea and vomiting.
Rehydration mixture useful for treatment of severe diarrhoea; this is particularly important if travelling with children.
Antiseptic useful for cuts and grazes such as povidone-iodine (eg Betadine).
Multivitamins, especially for long trips when dietary vitamin intake may be inadequate.
Calamine lotion or aluminium sulphate spray (eg Stingose spray) to ease irritation from bites and stings.
Bandages and Band-aids are useful for minor injuries.
Scissors, Tweezers and a Thermometer (note that mercury thermometers are prohibited by airlines).
Insect repellent, sunscreen, chap stick and water purification tablets.
Cold and Flu tablets and throat lozenges, in the changed environment these are comon health problems so, Pseudoephedrine hydrochloride (Sudafed) may be useful if flying with a cold to avoid ear damage.
Syringes and needles, take a couple of each in case you need injections in a country with medical hygiene problems. Ask your doctor for a note explaining why they have been prescribed.