U to Z of Holiday Health

A - Z of Holiday Health - U - Z

Below are some bite sized bits of information to helping you prepare for a happy, healthy and safe holiday.

U - UVA & UVB Rays

UVA and UVB rays stimulate the body's own photoprotective mechanisms in the different skin layers. UVB rays are the main cause of DNA damage to the skin causing sunburn and UVA rays cause changes in the dermis of the skin which can result in irreversible long turn damage, e.g. premature skin-ageing.

It is therefore imperative that you protect your skin while on holiday using a sun cream with an adequate SPF factor for the climate and amount of exposure to the sun that you may receive.

V - Vaccinations

Vaccinations are required if travelling to many parts of the world in particular those more exotic. Plan ahead and arrange to see your GP at least three months before your trip.

Some of the most common vaccinations are hepatitis A, typhoid, yellow fever and cholera. You may also be required to have immunisations against rabies, TB, hepatitis B, Japanese and tick borne encephalitis in more high risk areas. Some medication such as malaria tablets, must be taken for at least a week before your departure, for the duration of your trip and for some time after you return, ensure you take the full course and comply with the tablets instructions.

It is also worth checking that you are also up to date with your tetanus and polio vaccinations.

W - Warts & Verrucas

Warts are more common than you think, at least 1 in 10 has a wart or verrucas at any one time, and nearly everone has had a wart in their lifetime. A wart is a fleshy growth on the skin caused by infection with the human papilloma virus (HPV). A verrucas is a wart but found on the foot.

There are in fact 70 different virus that cause warts and the contraction of a wart is spread by direct skin contact or by touching moist surfaces, so an ideal breeding ground for the virus is on the floors of a swimming pool and changing rooms, which have been in contact with a person who has a wart or verrucas.

X - Xerosis

This is also known as dry skin and can be made worse by cold weather. So if you are off to warmer climes then you should see an improvement very quickly as long as you still remember to use a high protection sun cream.

Y - You

Look after yourself on holiday the holiday is for you so don't worry about everyone else and whether they are having a good time too. Treat yourself while on holiday a massage perhaps or a nice solitary walk. It is a time to recharge your batteries too!

Z - Zzzzzzz

Once you get away make sure you recharge your body with plenty of Zzzzzz. To get the best sleep avoid excessive alcohol and caffeine intake and try and avoid large meals and sugary meals.