- Perhaps the most important rule is: “Peel it, boil it, cook it or forget it” , one of the main health problems amongst travellers to the Peru is gastro-intestinal unease known more commonly as “travellers diarrhoea”.
- “Soroche” or altitude sickness: Soroche affects many people during their first few days in Cusco, Puno and Arequipa. Symptoms of altitude sickness include headaches, fatigue, nausea, loss of appetite, insomnia and shortness of breath.
Rest on the first day of your arrival to the Highlands, and consume light meals to prevent altitude illness (soroche). Do not have cabonized drinks, eat fresh fruits and lemon flavor candies, also have tablets of “coramina” handy, these pills are ideal to avoid soroche. Try to avoid heavy foods because digestion is much slower than in the coast. Drinking “coca tea” is recommended.
- Drink bottled mineral or filtered water only.
- Put sunsreen on
- Use insect repelent in the Amazon basin
- Carry a basic medical kit with: painkillers, tampons, contraceptives, water-purifying tablets, foot powder, rehydration salts, anti-diarrhoea treatment and antibiotics, first aid kit.
- Be sure to bring a good supply of any medicines you may be using, you may not be able to find it locally. It is a good idea to have your Doctor to give you a generic prescription, commercial names may vary from one country to another.
- Visit a travel clinic in your country for your immunizations at least six weeks before your departure date. Recommended vaccines for Amazon travellers are: yellow fever, tetanus, typhoid and hepatitis A. Some doctors will suggest you also get immunizations for: diphtheria, TB, hepatitis B, rabies and meningitis. If you are crossing borders remember you will not be allowed into Brazil without a Yellow fever vaccination.
- Play it safe, follow local advice and feel free to ask your guide, tour leader and other local hosts in case of doubt.
It is compulsory you carry travel and medical insurance with you throughout your trip, make sure these cover emergency medical treatment as well as emergency medical evacuation. TRAVEL GUARD is a reputable supplier of insurance in North America, yet there are many other suppliers around the world for you to choose from:
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