Health :: Health tips for travelers to the cricket world cup

The Cricket World Cup (Cup) will be held in several Caribbean nations (Jamaica, St Kitts & Nevis, Antigua & Barbuda, St Lucia, St Vincent & Grenadines, Barbados, Grenada, Trinidad & Tobago, and Guyana) March 4?April 28, 2007.

Thousands of people from all over the world are expected to gather for the Cup. Mass gatherings may pose an increased risk of illness or injury so CDC recommends a few safety and travel health tips:

Before Travel

Consult your doctor or health-provider to be sure you are up to date with all routine vaccinations (e.g., measles, mumps, rubella, tetanus, diphtheria, pertussis, polio and influenza). Diseases such as measles and mumps remain common in many parts of the world, including some developed countries.

See a health-care provider or a travel medicine specialist, ideally 4-6 weeks before travel, to get any additional vaccinations, medications, or information you may need to stay healthy.

Yellow fever vaccination is recommended for travel to Guyana and Trinidad and Tobago. Documentation of yellow fever vaccination may be required if you travel to other areas within 6 days of visiting either country.

Dengue fever, which is transmitted through the bite of an infected mosquito, may also pose a risk in some areas.

If you will be traveling on a cruise ship, review health information on Cruise Ship Travel.

Prepare a travel health kit that includes an ample supply of your prescribed medications in their original containers; an antidiarrheal medication; alcohol-based hand gel (containing at least 60% alcohol); an antibiotic for self-treatment of most causes of acute bacterial illness; a thermometer; and insect repellent.

During Travel

To reduce your risk of illness

Use an insect repellent on exposed skin when outdoors, to repel mosquitoes, ticks, fleas and other arthropods. EPA-registered repellents include products containing DEET (N,N-diethylmetatoluamide) and picaridin (KBR 3023). DEET concentrations of 30% to 50% are effective for several hours. Picaridin, available at 7% and 15 % concentrations, needs more frequent application.

When using sunscreen, apply sunscreen first and then repellent. Repellent should be washed off at the end of the day before going to bed.

If visiting an area where there is risk of malaria, make sure to take your malaria prevention medication before, during, and after your trip, as directed, and wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants if outdoors between dusk and dawn as a barrier to mosquito bites.

Practice the same safety measures you would at home:

Don?t drink alcoholic beverages and drive

Wear your safety belt, and follow the local customs and laws regarding pedestrian safety and vehicle speed.

Use helmets when riding bicycles and motorcycles.

In crowded settings such as stadiums, avoid fast-moving crowds.

Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 15 seconds, or use an alcohol-based hand gel (containing at least 60% alcohol) to clean your hands.

Eat only fully cooked foods that are served hot, and avoid raw shellfish, unpasteurized dairy items, and food from street vendors.

Drink only bottled water or carbonated (bubbly) drinks from cans or bottles with intact seals.

After your return

If you are not feeling well or have been injured, seek medical attention and mention your recent travel to your health-care provider.

If you are returning from malaria risk areas and become sick with a fever, chills, headache, muscle aches, tiredness, or flu-like illness, get immediate medical attention, and be sure to tell the doctor or health-care provider where you have traveled. Keep in mind that malaria can develop up to 1 year after travel.

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