Importance of Preventing Disease When Traveling and At Home

mutantstomachbugRecently in the news, a drug-resistant form of a bug that causes traveler’s diarrhea (called Shigella sonnei…or more commonly known as “Montezuma’s revenge”) is causing outbreaks in the United States.

Shigella is a common cause of diarrhea. The bacteria spread very easily through contaminated food or pools and ponds. Once easy to treat with antibiotics, the infection has taken on a mutant form and being carried into the U.S. by international travelers and spreading once it’s here. This antibiotic-resistant superbug is hard to treat because it spreads easily and the potential for more (and larger) outbreaks is a real concern. All of this makes it even more critical to prevent shigellosis from spreading.

5 Ways to Reduce Your Risk of Disease When Traveling

1. Drink bottled water when traveling outside the United States. Use bottled water for brushing teeth as well.
2. Be sure tea and coffee are made with boiled water.
3. If alcoholic drinks are consumed, ensure they are not served with ice cubes made from tap water in at-risk areas.
4. Beware of consuming fruits and vegetables that may have been washed in unsafe tap water. Try to eat produce you can peel yourself (like bananas and oranges).
5. Avoid buying food from street vendors and be careful of undercooked meat or seafood.

Preventing the Spread of Disease

Healthy habits can prevent germs and infectious diseases from spreading. Take the proper precautions, teach the healthy habits to children and you can decrease the risk of infecting yourself or others:
1. Get vaccinated. Immunization offers protection and saves lives. Vaccines can prevent many infectious diseases. You should get some vaccinations in childhood, some as an adult, and some for special situations like pregnancy and travel. Visit eMedical Urgent Care facilities to ensure you and your family are up-to-date on your vaccinations.
2. Avoid close contact and stay home when you are sick.
3. Wash your hands often with soap and water.
4. Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth. Cough and sneeze into your sleeve – not your hands.
5. Regularly clean and disinfect surfaces and objects. Pay special attention to the “hot zones” like door handles, light switches, counters, toys and other high-traffic areas.

World Meningitis Day is April 24

Going to your local urgent care center and getting vaccinated is one of the easiest ways to fight preventable contagious diseases. The Confederation of Meningitis Organizations (CoMO) recognizes World Meningitis Day annually on April 24. Every year more than 1.2 million people suffer meningitis which is a disease that can affect anyone, anywhere and at any time. Vaccinations play an incredibly important role in the prevention of this deadly and most devastating disease. Vaccines have been effectively used for many years to protect against the three major causes of bacterial meningitis, commonly known as meningococcal, pneumococcal or Haemophilus influenza type b (Hib). Tragedy can be prevented and lives can be saved.

Contact the Middletown, NJ or Berkeley Heights, NJ eMedical Urgent Care today to learn more about vaccinations and how they can help protect you and your family.

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