How to tackle travelers diarrhea

Travelers’ diarrhea refers to the condition of increased bowel movements that is often accompanied by abdominal cramps, vomiting, fever, urgency, nausea, bloating, and malaise.

Diarrhea and most other food related illness are caused either due to a change in the amount or type of food, or some infection that has been caused by eating contaminated food.

Travelers’ diarrhea often begins abruptly. It might either get commenced during the course of travel or soon after reaching home. Certain destinations such as Latin America, Africa and the Middle East are found to make a traveler more prone to the attack. Compared to older people, young adults are more likely to be affected by this disease. Though not life-threatening, an attack of diarrhea during the travel makes a person highly irritated and kills his mood.

Travelers’ diarrhea is usually acquired by ingestion of contaminated food, water, or both. It is extremely important to ensure that both cooked and uncooked food materials are not handled in unhygienic ways. However, certain food materials are compared to be more harmful than others. Raw or undercooked meat, poultry, seafood, raw fruits and vegetables top the list of such risky victuals.

While on a travel, ensure that that every bottle of water that you drink is adequately purified. Safe beverages include bottled carbonated beverages, beer, wine, hot coffee or tea, or water boiled and appropriately treated with iodine.

A traveler affected with diarrhea gets terribly upset and exhausted as his bowels gets emptied more than five times a day in the form of loose or watery stools. Dehydration is likely if severe vomiting follows the attack of diarrhea.

The infectious organisms that are mostly associated with traveler’s diarrhea include E.Coli, Salmonella, Campylobacter, Shigella, Rotavirus and Giardia. However, ‘prevention is better than cure’ remains the watchword in this case.

Close observance of rules of hygiene while consuming food and beverages during travel will surely decrease the likelihood of developing diarrhea. In some people, milk can aggravate diarrhea and is therefore better to avoid drinking milk during travel.


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