Winter is a great time for travel to the US, but it can bring with it harsh weather conditions and a host of health concerns, especially for those who are not used to living in such cold climes.
Travelers from warm or tropical regions who hardly experience sub-zero temperatures in their home country are more susceptible to infections and other medical problems in this type of situation.
Here we have for you some essential tips to keep you safe and healthy while you enjoy your time in the US during the winter season.
Tips to Follow When You are En Route
- Stay hydrated – It is the best way to avoid getting sick en route. Water helps to keep your body systems functioning well and supports digestion. And if you want to make sure that your skin does not get flaky and dry, drink lots of water.
- The antidote to alcohol – Alcohol is seriously dehydrating, so if you plan to drink during a long flight to the US, make sure to follow it up with adequate amounts of H2O!
- Supplements – Vitamin B complex can boost your strength, fight fatigue, and provide relief from stress during air travel.
- Hot natural drinks – Another tip is to pack your own teabags! Hot water is available almost everywhere, free of cost and so you will always have something you enjoy, to sip on. Feel nauseous during traveling? Ginger always works! It has proven anti-inflammatory effects as well. Tea with licorice roots is soothing to the throat, the digestive system and works wonders to calm your mind.
- Snacking – Make sure to pack healthy snacks that are high on nutrients, fiber or protein, like whole grain crackers, cheese, apples and almonds to help you avoid gorging on sweets and such simple carbohydrates, that can contribute to inflammation as well as blood sugar swings.
- Exercise – During the journey make sure to stretch every once in a while – whether it a quick stop at a gas station, or a walk down the airplane aisle, to avoid stiffening and swelling of the joints.
- Hand sanitizer – Are you germophobic? Don’t forget to bring your own hand sanitizer because millions of people use the same seats, drinking fountains, and bathrooms during travel every day.
Preventing Cold, Flu, and Sinuses
- Consult with your doctor, and if he allows, make sure to carry some Vitamin C supplements with you.
- Bromelain, an enzyme derived from pineapple, when taken with Vitamin C, helps to thin the mucous and decrease any inflammation.
- Charcoal tablets (not capsule) help to absorb and flush out any unwelcome ‘invaders’. Sucking on zinc lozenges will help kill the germs and also raise the lymphocyte count in your blood, thus increasing your immunity.
- Apart from reducing your nauseous feeling, ginger tea also clears your sinuses, and supports the immune system.
- Salt water sniffs are really effective in getting rid of the bacteria and viruses in the nose and nasopharynx, which may otherwise cause infection.
Additional Tips for Your US Travel
- Pack your clothes appropriately
In a geographically expansive country such as the US, the weather can significantly vary from one place to another.
Do your research and pack your clothes in accordance to the place you will be visiting. For many US regions, wearing only one jacket or sweater will not suffice during the winter months. Plan to dress in layers for better protection.
- Stay dry
Wearing wet clothes chills the body and makes you more susceptible to catching frostbite or hypothermia. So when exposed to sleet, ice or snow, make sure to cover yourself with waterproof clothing.
- Tread carefully
Icy road surfaces and sidewalks can be very slippery and are a common reason for falls and injuries in winters. Make sure to tread carefully while you are there.
- Monitor your heart rate
The cold weather can affect your heart in adverse ways – it increases your blood pressure and the risk of heart attack. The elderly are especially susceptible to it, and make sure to monitor your heart rate and take preventive measures.
- Asthmatic episodes can occur
The cold weather is hard on people with asthma. So if you have a respiratory ailment, it is prudent to be prepared for the occurrence of an asthmatic episode. Watch your physical activity, take extra precautions when outside, and always carry your inhaler.
- Wind Chill – the cold truth
Be sure to take into consideration the wind chill. Wind chill, which is the temperature that your body feels, is always lower than the actual thermometer reading. Check the wind chill in the area in advance and dress appropriately.
- Stay hydrated
Your body is as likely to lose water in winter as it is in summer. So, drink plenty of water during your visit to the US, and stay hydrated. Hot tea is also a salient option.
Buy Adequate Visitors’ Insurance Coverage
Children, elderly travelers, and other individuals with frail health should take special precautions while traveling to the US during the winter months. Medical expenses in the US for visitors can be extremely high and remember that accidents or illnesses can happen anywhere at any time.
Protect yourself and loved ones by purchasing a good visitors’ insurance plan to have a safe and hassle-free trip to the United States.