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The common complaint of travelers around the world is that the stomach does not get easily accustomed to the dietary changes. The result is that they end up suffering from an upset stomach, which otherwise is referred to as traveler's diarrhea. This condition, which primarily affects the digestive tract, is normally characterized by loose stool, abdominal cramping and a general feeling of discomfort. There are several factors which may alter the normal functions of the body, especially when you travel to places and have a change in your diet habits.

The primary cause of traveler's diarrhea is ingesting contaminated food and drink. This can also be transmitted through raw or undercooked meat, fish or vegetables. Improper method of cooking does not destroy harmful pathogens and when such foods are ingested, they can cause havoc to the digestive system, resulting in an upset stomach, nausea induced vomiting and the like. This illness is also caused by protozoa like bacteria and viruses. Food poisoning is one of the after effects of such practices and the individual gets completely drained of energy and appears sick all the time.

Prevention and Treatment of Traveler's Diarrhea

Following a proper traveler's diarrhea treatment routine will help you get rid of this disorder without causing much havoc to your daily life. This timely diagnosis and treatment of this digestion related disorder can relieve the symptoms and discomfort much faster and you can go back to your schedule without further delay. However, in order to prevent traveler's diarrhea you need to follow a few things so that the next time you travel to some place, you do not suffer from this disorder again. Before we take a look at the preventive measures, let us discuss the available treatment options for traveler's diarrhea.

Home Remedies
There are several effective remedial measures that help alleviate the pain and discomfort of this distressing condition. You can find these cures at home and they are quite effective when it comes to curing a disorder without producing any unwanted side effects or complications.
  • Drink plenty of water and other fluids to keep the body hydrated.
  • Eat a serving of yogurt to ease the gut.
  • To relieve the pain caused due to abdominal cramps, place a heat bag on your stomach at regular intervals.
  • Alter your food habits till you find complete relief from traveler's diarrhea.
  • Include broth, fruit juices, beverages that are caffeine free, and hot tea.
  • Follow a diet which includes bland and non spicy foods. Bread, cereals, crackers, eggs, rice and soup.
  • Other easy to digest foods are skinless white meat chicken, bananas, cooked carrots, gelatin, potatoes, noodles, toast etc.
  • Avoid regular food for a period of three days, after which your normal diet routine can be resumed.
Clinical Treatment
The one drawback about herbal remedies is that they do not give the desired result at all times. In case none of the above mentioned home remedies prove to be effective in relieving the symptoms of traveler's diarrhea, it is but natural to turn towards receiving proper treatment from a health care provider. The physician may conduct a series of diagnostic tests and may also insist in stool samples to assess the exact cause and severity of the disorder. Once the tests and analysis are done, the medical practitioner may prescribe medication like loperamide, bismuth subsalicylate etc. Antibiotics are also prescribed in order to destroy bacterial infections in the digestive tract. The doctor will also recommend complete rest and chalk out a diet plan till complete cure is achieved.

Preventive Measures
While traveling to any other place or country you need to keep certain things in mind, so that you do not catch this illness or for that matter any other infection or disease. Always remember that prevention is better than cure, so before you embark on your journey you have to exercise certain things. Also visit your health care provider before you set off to travel, who may provide medication in case you fall sick.
  • Always insist on boiled water if you are eating in restaurants. In case you cannot avail of boiled water, carry chlorine bleach or tincture of iodine to treat the water before consumption.
  • Eat well cooked foods, that are served hot, like vegetables, meat or fish. You can also drink carbonated beverages.
  • Avoid eating from street vendors on hygienic grounds.
  • Completely stay away from raw foods like leafy vegetables, meat, vegetables and fish. Dairy products are also best to be avoided.
  • Unpeeled fruits should be strictly off the list.
  • Never drink tap water, or include ice in your drinks, since you do not know the source of the water.
Though not usually grave in nature, being a victim of traveler's diarrhea can be quite bothersome as it disrupts your plans and also hampers the joy of exploring a new place. So to avoid these altercations it is essential to follow proper traveler's diarrhea treatment methods. Take care!