Travel Illnesses Can Happen To You

Traveling outside the U.S. is exciting, refreshing and exhilerating.  However, there are some common illnesses that many travelers get when they visit undeveloped countries.  Almost 40% of travelers manage to contract a virus while on vacation, so you want to be aware of these common illnesses and make sure you are prepared by carrying travel health insurance.

Montezuma’s Revenge is the most common illness, and is not contained to just Mexico.  Montezuma’s Revenge can occur in any country where you might be exposed to different strains of the E. coli bacteria.  M.R. causes diarrhea, and if left untreated, possible dehydration.  It is a water born virus, so items like fruit, smoothies, alcoholic beverages made with fruit, ect., may have foreign bacteria your body is not familiar with.  People traveling to the U.S. from other countries can also get Montezuma’s Revenge.  If you suspect you have M.R., get to a local doctor or pharmacist for diagnosis and treatment.

American Insurance For Expats offers travel insurance coverage for international insurance needs of U.S. and non-U.S. citizens who need temporary medical assistance and insurance while traveling for business or pleasure anywhere outside of their home country.  American Insurance For Expats works with the carriers IMG, BUPA, and SKYMED.

Another common illness is Malaria.  Malaria is spread through insect bites.  It used to be that malaria was only a problem in tropical areas, but in recent years, outbreaks have occurred in places such as Marseilles, France and Florida as well.

Other common insect bite type illnesses are Dengue Fever and Chikungunya.  The incidences of contracting these two illnesses have been particularly high in travelers returning from Central America, India, and the Caribbean.   Unfortunately, if you contract Dengue Fever, there is no specific treatment.  Dengue fever is an acute viral infection caused by at least four different strains of Dengue virus. Classic Dengue begins suddenly with flu-like symptoms consisting of fever, malaise, cough and headache.  Severe pains in muscles and joints, as well as chills also occur. Enlarged lymph glands, rash and low WBC counts are common. After a week or so, the symptoms regress but weakness may persist.  According to the CDC’s web site, travelers should consult a physician to diagnose the illness, drink plenty of liquids and get lots of rest.

With a medical travel insurance policy, a traveler will have access to international, multilingual customer service centers, claims administrators who process claims from all over the world, handling virtually every language and currency, and 24 hour access to highly qualified coordinators of emergency medical services and international treatment.

Almost 40% of travelers manage to pick up some sort of virus, either water or insect born, while traveling to a foreign country, so it is better to be prepared by carrying travel health insurance.