Going abroad and traveling the world can be one of the most exciting and thrilling experiences of life. It is something that can take years alone just to plan and save for. With the cost of traveling becoming easier to afford, it is becoming more popular just to jump on an airplane and take off. However, one of the things that people forget to plan ahead for is their health while traveling abroad.

Staying healthy is a very important aspect of traveling that requires more than just a little planning. It takes several considerations that you may not be used to.

Here are some important health tips:

Before Going Abroad

Research – You should carefully research the area to which you plan on traveling to find out about their health care systems, current issues, and possible health concerns. A couple of good resources are: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Travelers’ Health, The CIA World Fact Book, and the U.S. Department of State Travel Information.

See Your Doctor – Before going abroad, you should have a complete checkup by your doctor or physician. It is also a good idea to get an eye exam and a dental checkup. Even though healthcare abroad is generally good, the quality of care you receive may be different in various countries or regions. It may also be more expensive than it is in the United States. You should inform your physician of what region you will be traveling to and follow any advice they give you for immunizations and preventative care. It is also a good idea to take a supply of any medications that you take, large enough to last for the duration of your trip.

Immunizations, Illnesses and Diseases – Be sure to find out about various illnesses, which may be more commonly found abroad or in the specific regions which you plan on traveling to. There may be immunizations or pills, which should be taken to prevent certain illnesses and diseases, before going abroad. Information on illnesses which are more prevailing abroad can be found by visiting the CDC website.

Food and Water Safety – In some regions of the world, the water may not be safe to drink. To avoid diarrhea and other painful side effects, questionable water should be purified before you drink it. You should also make sure that bottled water is completely sealed when you buy it. If you happen to get food poisoning or diarrhea, you should be sure to remember to drink plenty of fluids and stay fully hydrated. If your condition worsens, then you should consider seeing a doctor.

Traveling abroad should be a fun and exciting experience that you will remember for years to come. However, facing an illness or disease which could have easily been prevented can ruin the whole thing. By taking the proper preventative measures before you ever step on your flight, you can ensure that your trip will be full of treasured memories that you will cherish forever.