At this time of year, many of us are thinking of travel and jetting off to warmer climates for a much needed holiday break. As a pharmacist, I like to think I’m equipped to sort out most problems but am still occasionally surprised by how many times I have to visit a pharmacy abroad because I’ve forgotten something or have hit upon an unexpected problem!
Before travelling there are a few things you will need to check out e.g. any travel vaccinations needed for the region you are going to, or any anti-malaria protection as well as Foreign Office guidance for safety concerns.
However the following I’d pack in any holiday travel kit!
1.Prescribed medication has to be first on the list. As a Pharmacist of many years experience, I can’t count the number of times people have brought in prescriptions on the way to the airport! It’s best to plan well ahead of your holiday as surgeries need time issue a prescription and sometimes stock shortages can occur. At The Health Dispensary we offer a repeat prescription service, customers can warn us of impending holidays so we can adjust with the surgery and have your prescription fulfilled in plenty of time.
2. Painkillers- nothing posh, paracetamol or ibuprofen just for general headaches and niggles. If you have children a child-friendly version in liquid or sachets may be required. Remember the 100ml rule at airports though.
3. Rehydrations salts such as Dioralyte or our Numark own brand help with diarrhoea, sunstroke and hangovers! If skiing they’re useful as replenishment for a body exerting itself, or after the dehydrating effects of air travel.
3. Creams- antiseptic cream is even more useful when abroad as often cuts can occur when barefoot on sand, coral/ shells in the sea or from more adventurous exploits than usual. I normally pack a steroid cream which can be used for insect bites or minor skin irritations and allergies. With my wellness hat on I also love Neal’s Yard bee balm which is great for using as a lip salve or on minor nicks and grazes.
4. Plasters- the scourge of the flip-flop! Blister plasters are even more useful as they provide a sealed environment for healing and acting as a second skin stay in place longer. A few pre-packed sterile dressings and some micropore tape are also useful for larger wounds.
5. Tummy meds- something like Numark is loads cheaper. Anti-diarrhoeal capsules such as Loperamide (Imodium) are also invaluable as our bodies adapt to different foods, water and temperature.
6. Sun Protection creams are often very expensive abroad so pack a few, and a nice soothing after-sun such as aloe vera Remember some medication can make you more prone to sunburn so if in any doubt ask one of our Wellness Pharmacists.