Thailand Healthy Travel
Before You Go - consider the areas of Thailand you will be visiting and check for recent health alerts. The U.S. Center for Disease Control has an excellent site and the BBC site is another good resource.
Endemic An infection (or disease) is said to be endemic in a population (or area) when that infection is maintained in the population without the need for external inputs or transmission. in Thailand .. Diseases
Water in Thailand
Water - is not usually a problem in Thailand. Bottled water is cheap and available virtually everywhere except very remote adventure venues. But Thailand is a tropical to sub-tropical region and may be extremely humid. Proper hydration is extremely important.
Thailand's Heat & Sun
Heat & Sun - are important considerations in Thailand. Drink more water than you think you need and don't over exert. Take the sun gradually for the first several days. Consider using sun screens and avoiding exposure in the early afternoons.
Food in Thailand
Thai food is one of the rewards of a visit to Thailand. In restaurants and stalls frequented by Thais, it will be cheap, fresh and tasty. Common sense is the key. Look for signs of cleanliness. As for the freshness of food, let your nose guide you. If something smells spoiled don't eat it.
Avoid undercooked meats. One other caveat might be the seasoning. While some Thai food is quite mild, other dishes are downright fiery. See some recommendations for Thai Food.
Hygiene in Thailand
Hygiene will be important for two reasons.
- Heat - Thailand is hot and in the dry season can be dusty. You won't perspire, you will sweat. Bacteria will grow faster and fungus infections are always an issue.
- Odors - You will smell bad. The Thais are fastidious people. You will seldom see a dirty Thai unless they are engaged in hot dirty work. As soon as practical they will bathe and change clothes.
Bathe several times each day. Make your first stop after a tour or trek the shower. Then when you sit down for that cool drink, the Thais and your fellow travelers will appreciate your presence much more.
Using Thai Style Toilets
Toilets, especially up country, may be the squat type. And there will seldom be toilet paper available, even in some of the sit-down stalls. Toilet paper is available in most markets, so carrying your own is advisable.
If you do find yourself in a Thai style toilet, you will probably see the squat porcelain fixture at or near floor level. Nearby should be a large bucket of water or a built-in concrete water tank. Then there should be a plastic or aluminum bowl.
After finishing, the Thais clean themselves with one hand while using the plastic bowl to pour water on their fingertips. Then they dip more water and pour over their soiled hand. Don't contaminate the bucket or tank of clean water.
Flush the toilet by using the bowl to pour sufficient amounts of water into it.
There will usually be a place to wash your hand properly. Many will have bars of soap. Carrying your own small bar of soap is an excellent idea.
Carrying toilet paper is also an excellent idea if you wish to avoid soiling your hands. But don't put large amounts of toilet paper into the toilet as it may clog. Most toilets have a small waste basket for that purpose.
If you are not familiar with Thai toilet procedures and managing clothing at the same time, it may be a good idea the remove your clothing. You probably get the idea?