The flu is always a bummer, but catching it while you’re on vacation is a double bummer. Here are some things you can do to avoid the flu as well as some tips for how to handle it if you’re traveling.
Avoid the flu on vacation
As they say, one ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. The single best protection from the flu is the flu shot. It takes about two weeks after the shot for your
body to develop the antibodies that protect you from illness, so plan to get your shot at least two weeks before you leave. If you’re traveling abroad, great news! The U.S. flu shot will protect you from the majority of flu viruses found in other parts of the world!
In addition to getting the flu shot, protect yourself by using common sense and having good health habits.
- Keep your hands off your face, especially your eyes nose and mouth.
- Avoid people who are visibly sick.
- Wash your hands with warm water and soap for 20 seconds as often as you can.
- Carry hand sanitizer and disinfectant wipes with you everywhere you go.
If you catch the flu on vacation
If you do catch the flu while traveling, taking care of yourself and preventing the spread of germs are key. Most people can recover from the flu at home, but the flu can be deadly for people with compromised immune systems. If you have a condition like heart disease, diabetes, asthma, a neurological condition, or if you’re 65 years or older, pregnant or have a young child, seek medical attention immediately.
Otherwise stay in your hotel room and rest. Don’t go out in public again until your fever has naturally subsided for 24 hours without the help of fever-reducing medicines. You will remain contagious until 24 hours after your fever breaks, and the only way you can recover is to rest. So, go to sleep, enjoy the hotel’s free internet, and allow yourself the time to recuperate. If you have to go outside, wear a face mask out of courtesy to other people, and please DO NOT FLY until you are well.
Finally, there’s one more thing to consider if you are traveling abroad and have health concerns…the flu or otherwise. Where will you find medical treatment if you need it? Will your insurance cover the cost of medical care in other countries? Will you need to buy additional health insurance? It may seem counter-intuitive in the age of the internet, but you might consider hiring a travel agent if you are traveling abroad. They can help you answer all these questions, and they can be a great advocate when dealing with your health insurance agency.
At EliteCare, our primary concern is your health. If you’re planning a trip and need a flu shot before you go, call us at (662) 348-3342 to make an appointment!