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Travel Medicine Checklist: Complete Guide to Staying Healthy Overseas

Visit a Travel Clinic To Complete Your Travel Medicine Checklist

Whether you are taking a trip for business or personal reasons, the travel medicine services at Dedication Health are tailored to meet your individual travel needs with the goal of keeping you healthy during and after your trip. There are health risks when we travel, especially overseas. Travel medicine clinics lower those risks with pre-travel consultations, travel immunizations, and medication allowances for international travelers. Make sure you visit a travel medicine clinic 6-8 weeks before your trip to cross items off on your travel medicine checklist.

Travel Vaccines

Travel vaccines, also called travel immunizations, are shots travelers can get before visiting certain areas of the world that help protect them from serious illnesses. Visit a travel clinic 4-6 weeks before your trip to find out which vaccines are recommended, or required, for your destination. Make sure you don’t skip these task on your travel medicine checklist. Travel vaccines are safe, effective ways to help protect travelers from bringing home more than they bargained for.

Recommended vaccines are travel vaccinations that can protect you in areas where there is an intermediate or high risk for contracting certain illnesses. They also help prevent the spread of diseases from one country to another.

Required vaccines are travel vaccines that you might have to show proof of in order to visit certain countries.  The yellow fever vaccine may be required for travel to certain parts of Africa and South America.

Pack a Travel Health Kit

It’s always wise to include packing a medical kit on your travel medicine checklist, especially if your vacation will be a long one. Here is a list of items you may want to include in your kit. Your travel medicine specialist will be able to provide more recommendations based on your health and itinerary.

  • A digital thermometer can be used to monitor fevers and to determine if you should seek serious medical help. This is particularly useful in places where dengue fever is a problem.
  • Bandages (Band-Aids or “plasters”) of varying size come in handy.
  • Medical tape will help keep those bandages in place while you sweat.
  • Medical equipment you may need (i.e. syringes, inhalers, epi-pens)
  • Aloe wipes or other sun relief items (You also don’t want to forget to pack sunscreen on your travel medicine checklist!)
  • Acetaminophen (Tylenol/paracetemol) is the best pain reliever for fighting mild fevers, but it isn’t as good at controlling inflammation after injury.
  • Ibuprofen (Advil/Motrin) is a useful anti-inflammatory drug to control swelling in case you twist an ankle. It also helps with general aches and pains (e.g., back pain, toothache, etc) that may pop up. People who think they may have dengue fever should avoid NSAIDs such as aspirin, ibuprofen, and naproxen.
  • Anti-diarrhea tablets (loperamide/Imodium) are an unfortunate necessity in Asia. Just a general change in diet and bacterial contamination can lead to traveler’s diarrhea. Avoid taking until necessary; diarrhea is the body’s natural way of flushing bacteria.
  • Alcohol wipes are good for disinfecting wounds, tweezers, thermometers, and other things. Be sure to add them to your travel medicine checklist.
  • Antibacterial ointment or cream is good for treating small infections before they become bigger problems.
  • Sharp tweezers can be used to remove splinters, ticks, and other annoyances that don’t belong under your skin. Don’t bring them on the plane!
  • Hand sanitizer should be used before working on an injury, and it comes in handy after using squat toilets where soap is rarely available. Look for the wipes in packets rather than a bottle.
  • Gauze pads are sterile and can be used to clean and cover scrapes or injuries too large for a plaster. Be sure to bring a few different sizes.
  • Insect repellent with 30% to 50% DEET recommended and a must-have item on your travel medicine checklist (towelettes with repellent may be easiest to transport)
  • Antihistamine tablets (Benadryl) are useful for keeping allergies and rashes from exotic foods and plants temporarily in check.
  • Motion sickness pills (Dramamine) will come in handy on rough bus and boat rides. Even if you aren’t susceptible to motion sickness, the person next to you might be!
  • Electrolyte mixes are good to have on hand in tropical climates.
  • Latex gloves are essential in case you need to administer first aid to someone else or come into contact with bodily fluids.

Travel Medicine Checklist: Get Travel Health Services at Dedication Health

Complete you travel medicine checklist by visiting a travel health clinic. Travel clinics, such as Dedication in Chicago, provide you with the travel health services you need before your trip. These travel medicine services include pre-travel counseling to provide health and safety information for your destination, vaccines, and medication allowances. If you’re in the greater Chicago area, our travel medicine specialist will take the time to go over all your concerns, so you can have a safe and healthy trip.

Being a concierge medical practice with a pre-travel health specialist on site, you’ll not only receive a higher standard of care but also quicker service. Best of all, you’ll have a whole suite of medical services available to you when you become a member, including advanced diagnostics, general wellness care, additional specialty care, medication management, and more. To become a member at Dedication Health, call our practice manager Christine at 847-986-6770. You can also complete our online form and we’ll be in touch as soon as possible.

For more information on travel medicine, check out the recommended links below.

Travel Health: What You Need to Know Before You Go

Travel Vaccines: Which Vaccinations You Need and Where To Get Them

Dedication Health: Travel Medicine in Chicago