If you’re heading off to sunnier climes this Summer, it’s a good idea to take some basic medicines and first aid items with you. Even if you’re going to a well-populated destination with good facilities, if you’re taken ill in the middle of the night, for example, you’ll want easy access to simple treatments without having to find your phrasebook and ask for directions to an all-night pharmacy. The items you should take may depend on where you’re going, but here are our tips for putting together a comprehensive kit in case of emergencies abroad.
Cuts, scrapes and blisters
Whether it’s a painful blister from sight-seeing in ill-fitting flip-flops or a scraped knee from a trip or fall, make sure you’ve got a stock of antiseptic wipes or cream, some sterile dressings and plenty of plasters. Tweezers and a small pair of scissors will also come in handy. More serious injuries will need attention from a trained first-aider, but if you can deal with minor problems yourself, you’ll make life a lot easier.
From headaches after one too many drinks in the bar or staying out in the sun longer than recommended, to a toothache or a pulled muscle, painkillers are an absolute must! Blister packs keep tablets dry, and they’re light and easy to travel with. Take whatever usually works best for you, whether that’s paracetamol, aspirin or ibuprofen. If you’re travelling with children, sachets of liquid paracetamol are useful to have with you: although you can buy liquid painkillers for children in pharmacies abroad, they won’t necessarily taste the same as the UK version your child is used to, and you may find yourself with an easily-avoidable battle on your hands!
Do all you can to minimise the risk of becoming unwell with sickness and diarrhoea by following our tips for . Obviously nothing is completely preventable, especially when you’re in a foreign country, so if the worst happens and you do end up with food poisoning or a sickness bug you can make things easier on yourself by ensuring you have a supply of over-the-counter medication. Pack remedies for constipation, rehydration sachets to replace fluids lost when you’re ill, and a stock of antacids to ease heartburn caused by unfamiliar food.
Help for Typical Holiday Woes
Of course you’ll follow our advice and make sure you use plenty of sunscreen and insect repellent to lower your chances of getting burnt or bitten, but if it does happen, the after-sun lotion and insect bite treatment you’ll pack in your first aid kit will ease the soreness, itchy and irritation.
Some countries and destinations have particular health recommendations that might mean you need to consider other items for your first aid kit, such as water purification tablets and anti-malaria medication, for example. Check the information and any health alerts for your own destination on this handy travel vaccination website to make sure you’re up-to-date and fully prepared to enjoy a healthy holiday!