While no one ever wants to get sick while on vacation,
sometimes it happens. Here we are providing some tips to
help avoid getting sick, what to do if you do get sick and what to
pack in your medical bag in case someone gets sick when you are on
The tips contained in this section are tips only and you should
check with your health care provider, doctor, and/or pharmacist
before any vacation for more tips and health care
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- Learn CPR. See
First Aid Safety Tips for Managing an Emergency from St. John Ambulance.
- We suggest that a before any extended out of
town/country vacation, you check with your doctor and have a
checkup for the kids. If a dentist visit is due, attend
to this also before you go on holidays. Prescriptions
should be updated and talk to your pharmacist about any
special concerns for medication that may be used on
holiday. Some antibiotics require you to remain out of
direct sunlight and require refrigeration.
- Keep all medication and medical bags out of
reach of children. Know what to do in case of Poisoning - see First Aid Tips from St. John Ambulance about the Dangers of Poisoning for Young Children
- See Keep the Bugs at Bay, Eight Tips for a Bug Free Summer
- Ensure children under 3 and children that put
toys in their mouths do not have small toys - see Safety tips for Buying Safe Toys and Using Toys Safely.
- Make sure everyone maintains a healthy diet,
which will help everyone adjust to new locations.
- Drink plenty of fluid when travelling - you
may want to stock up on bottled water or purchase bottled
water at your destination. Watch ice and salads if
concerned about water quality.
- Be as careful as possible at all times.
See other safety sections for additional tips.
- Know what poison ivy looks like and what to
do if someone touches it - See Poison Ivy.
- Stomach upsets are one of the most common
travel related illnesses. If the restaurant or food does
not look clean and fresh, don't eat it. Consider
- Get plenty of rest. Although you might
want to pack in as much each day as possible, remember that
children need their rest and the best rest is between 9:00
p.m. and 5:00 a.m. Maintaining a normal bedtime for
children means happier, well rested children that can enjoy the
activities planned for the vacation. Tired children are
more apt to be susceptible to illness. Parents need
their rest and quiet time too. Plan on an early night
every other day to keep up with sleep.
- Be aware of family allergies - see Travel Safety Tips - Severe Allergic Reactions
Wash hands often - keep premoistened
antiseptic wipes handy and use before eating. See Petting Zoo and Animal Exhibit Safety Tips
for tips on reducing the risk of exposure to E. Coli bacteria
- check with Hotel/Resort Staff for any
dangerous plants or animals to watch out for - See Seasonal Holiday Safety Tips
about poisonous plants at the holiday season.
- Do research about your destination - check
with local health department for health concerns to be aware
of. Check this site http://voyage.dfait-maeci.gc.ca/
for health advisories before you travel.
- Store food and drinks properly. Bottles
need to be washed with soap and hot water. Don't reuse
water bottles while travelling - bacteria can start to grow as soon as
your mouth contacts the water. Get fresh bottles
everyday. Leftover babyfood should be discarded if baby
is fed directly from jar. Untouched babyfood should be
refrigerated or discarded.
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- First Aid Safety Tips for Managing an Emergency from St. John's Ambulance
- First Aid Tips for a Choking Baby
- First Aid Tips from St. John Ambulance about the Dangers of Poisoning for Young Children
- Better be safe than sorry, if someone is ill
or seriously hurt - seek medical attention - especially infants and young
- Most hotels and resorts will be able to
assist you in the event that someone in the family becomes
sick or requires medical attention, including providing names
of local health care providers. Some Hotels/Resorts,
like Club Med, have doctors on site, others, like Walt Disney
World® Resorts, have a clinic available for guests.
- If a family member has a special medical
condition, check with your doctor to obtain references for a
physician to contact at your destination if a problem occurs.
- If your medical bag (see section below)
doesn't contain anything to help with the illness, check with
a local pharmacy for assistance.
- Your pharmacist may also be able to advise
you on the best medications to take with you for the ages of
the family. Chewable pepto bismol type tablets are a
convenient, effective treatment for mild stomach upset.
It works quickly and some feel that it also treats common
bacteria that may cause stomach aches.
- Fever is something that should be
treated aggressively while on holiday - tepid baths,
acetaminophen or ibuprofen for each member of the family
should be readily available.
- Hotel Staff may also have a supply of
medicines for guest use.
- Keep your medical bag with you and readily
available when travelling.
- Have saltine or plain crackers handy and some
flat ginger ale should help with upset stomachs.
- use a clean pad or towel with compression to
stop or reduce bleeding, until medical attention is obtained
if bleeding is severe.
- If possible, clean all scrapes and cuts and
then treat with
an antibacterial ointment to help avoid infection. See First Aid Tips for Cleaning, Treating and Protecting Minor Wounds
and First Aid Tips for Cuts
- Always have bandages available - while they
may not be necessary to cover a scrape, they sure make kids
- To remove bandages easily, soak cotton swab in baby oil and apply to all sides of the
bandage - wait five to ten minutes and the bandage should come off
- For nosebleeds, apply pressure and pinch the
nostrils closed for about five minutes and it should stop.
- For burns - seek medical attention
immediately if severe. If mild, immerse in cool water
and see Sun Safety Tips for tips
- In an emergency try to remain as calm as
- In the event of a bee sting, watch for severe
reactions such as hives on the body, headaches, nausea,
vomiting and difficulty breathing - see medical attention
immediately. To remove stinger, gently scrape area with
a finger nail, wash or wipe area with clean cloth or
antiseptic wipe, apply cold compress. An antihistamine
may be given to relieve minor symptoms - Hint - you can also
apply a liquid antihistamine externally directly to the bite
to relieve some pain and swelling. If the bite occurs in
the mouth, give an ice cube to suck on or a popsicle and seek
medical attention at the first sign of any swelling. See
First Aid Tips for Insect Stings.
- For insect bites, try not to scratch and
apply calamine lotion. Watch for allergic
- Watch for tick bites - there is a risk of
contracting lyme disease from these bites. Ticks can
remain in the bite - which can look like a little bump -
remove the tick with tweezers by pulling upwards evenly and
steadily. Try not to twist or crush the tick. Lyme
disease is a possibility in the Northeast United States from
deer ticks. To avoid catching this, keep kids out of
wooded areas and tall grass. Check their clothing and
bodies after outdoor activities for bites. Clean any
bites thoroughly and contact a doctor if a rash develops.
- Apply a cold compress to minor bumps, it
should relieve the pain and reduce the swelling. If pain
continues, give some age appropriate pain killer.
- If a head injury or bump occurs, watch for
symptoms of a concussion, which may include loss of
consciousness (even for a second or two), persistent vomiting,
lethargy, sleepiness or unequal pupil size.
- If someone comes into contact with Poison
Ivy wash contaminated skin carefully with soap and water -
be careful not to spread the oil or touch anything else- where
gloves if possible. If a reaction develops - seek
medical attention. Rash usually disappears within a week
to 10 days.
- To ease the removal of a splinter dip a cotton swab in cooking
oil and rub on splinter area, then apply ice to numb area and
remove with a tweezers.
(NC) The St. John Ambulance first aid approach for muscle
strain is to use RICE:
Rest stop the activity that caused the injury, Ice
apply to the injured area once immobilized, to reduce
swelling, Compression use a bandage to apply
pressure to the injury right away to help limit swelling, Elevation
elevate the injury to make it easier for fluids to drain
(NC) St. John Ambulance offers these tips to respond
to a fainting casualty. Remember, the casualty will be unconscious.
- Check the ABC¹s Airway, Breathing and Circulation.
- Check for shock.
- Give first aid for any visible injury.
- If injuries permit, place the casualty in the recovery
- Loosen tight clothing at the neck, chest and waist.
- Ensure an adequate supply of fresh air.
- A faint should last only a few minutes at the most, but
don¹t let the
revived casualty move until recovery is complete
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you pack a first aid kit/bag, it helps to look for a sturdy
well-built bag that can handle the riggers it will be put
through. A bag that has a water-proof pouch provides the
added benefit of keeping liquid items from accidentally spilling
on other contents in the bag or leaking.
If you have any suggestions to add - please
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All tips are offered as suggestions only.
While we have tried to provide you with a list
of suggestions to help parents when travelling with children to
keep them safe, unfortunately, we can’t think of everything
and it is the responsibility of parents to ensure their
See the following sections for specific tips:
First Aid Safety Tips for Managing an Emergency from St. John's Ambulance
Safety News - Summer Safety Warning - Press Release from Consumer Product Safety Commission
For First Aid Tips about Insect Stings
First Aid Tips for Cleaning, Treating and Protecting Minor Wounds
First Aid Tips for Cuts
For Safety Tips - Severe Allergic
Reactions Click on
For General Travel Safety Tips Click
For Car Safety Tips Click on
For Safety Tips when visiting Petting
Zoos and Animal Farms Click Below:
For Fire Safety Tips Click on
For Biking Safety Tips Click on
For Hotel Safety Tips Click on
For Playground Safety Tips Click on
For Pool and Beach Safety Tips Click
For Kids Club Safety Tips Click on
For Sun Safety Tips Click on
Holiday Safety Tips Click on
For Safety Tips for Using Public Washrooms Click on
For In-line Skating Safety Tips Click on
For Tips on Buying Safe Toys Click
For Seasonal Holiday
Safety Tips Click Below:
You may also want to check out
News - Safety Issues
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