Know Before You Go: The Importance of Travel Medicine

Regardless of the season or the year, the experts at Apex Medical Center want you to be safe when you travel. Medical care isn’t usually at the top of your mind when you travel, but you should certainly give travel medicine some consideration, especially right now. 

Before you go

Under normal circumstances, we encourage you to get a pre-travel exam before you take an international trip. During a pre-travel exam, your doctor reviews your medical history and current situation, considers your vital signs like blood pressure and how well your lungs are working, and checks to make sure all your vaccines are up-to-date and appropriate for the area where you plan to travel. 

If you take any medications regularly, make sure you have them and that there are no restrictions on taking them with you. 

Since the current times are anything but normal, there are a few other things you need to consider before planning a trip. First, there are travel restrictions for people coming from the United States in many parts of the world. You should check with the US Department of State, Bureau of Consular Affairs to make sure it’s possible to travel to your chosen destination, and find out if there are restrictions or advisories.

If you’ve been anywhere you may have been exposed to the novel coronavirus, you may want to consider being tested and isolating for two weeks prior to your trip. This course of action ensures you aren’t spreading the virus by taking a trip. 

You should also look at the rate of community spread in your destination. If the rate of transmission is high, reconsider your trip if possible. 

Travel

If you’re flying, you’ll need to wear a mask. In fact, most airlines aren’t allowing passengers to board without a mask. Similarly, travel by train or bus also requires a mask for safety. 

If you’re driving to your destination, think about where you will stop to use the restroom, eat, or take breaks. By thinking about all of those details ahead of time, you’re less likely to find yourself in a situation where you don’t know what to do. 

Wearing a mask in public, washing your hands frequently and avoiding crowded areas are three ways to protect yourself no matter where your travels take you. 

Arrival

Depending on your destination, you may be required to quarantine for a period of time once you arrive. Through careful planning, you’ll already know if that’s the case or not. If you know you’re going to be quarantined, be prepared with books or other activities. 

Be sure to follow the local regulations. If the area is under a mask mandate, don’t violate it. 

Know where you can get care if you develop symptoms or have other health issues on your trip. This may require some calls ahead of your trip or upon arrival. Currently, some areas are utilizing urgent care centers more, and in others primary care providers are only seeing people under particular circumstances. 

The safest decision

The safest decision when it comes to traveling during a pandemic is to stay at home. The fewer people you’re around, the less likely it is you can transmit the virus. There are times that travel can’t be avoided, though. There are even some ways you can vacation with less risk. 

For example, a trip to the beach where you stay at a private residence with a kitchen and prepare most of your own food, limit outings to shopping centers or bars, and spend plenty of time outside, distant from others, is far safer than staying at a busy resort, dining out nightly, and frequenting bars and clubs. 

Regardless of the reason for your trip or what you’ll be doing while you travel, a visit with your care provider prior to going can give you critical information as well as some measure of peace of mind. Book your appointment at any of our three convenient locations today to discuss traveling during a pandemic.

You Might Also Enjoy...

Myths and Facts About Group Counseling

The idea of group therapy can be scary, but that’s partly due to misconceptions and common myths about what it is and how it works. In this post we present some of those myths, along with some facts about group counseling you may not know.

Joint Health Tips You Can Start Using Today

You probably don’t spend much time thinking about your joints — until they start to hurt. Then, you may start considering how to protect them! Here are some of our best tips for preserving your joint health.

Signs You May Need Marriage Counseling

Marriage counseling may seem like something you do as a last ditch effort to save your relationship — or to confirm it can’t be saved — but it doesn’t have to be that way. Here, we discuss some signs that counseling could improve your marriage.

5 Things That May Be Making Your Joints Ache

Joint pain can build up slowly or begin suddenly. It can affect any part of your body where two bones meet. The underlying causes of joint pain vary and your age, sex, overall health, and other factors help doctors diagnose the cause of joint pain.

What to Expect at Your Hypnotherapy Session

Pain management often requires a multi-pronged approach, and if one of those prongs is hypnotherapy, you may feel both curious and nervous. In this post we discuss what to expect during your session, as well as why hypnotherapy works.

I Feel Anxious All the Time

Worrying is part of living, but worrying all the time can interfere with your quality of life, and make getting through a normal day difficult. Anxiety disorders can make it feel like worry rules your life, but there are effective treatments.