Travel immunizations are not an option in many cases. Anyone who is traveling to a foreign country is susceptible to diseases not found in their home country. Keeping this in mind, individuals need to be proactive in getting the proper protections in place. Do not put this off, either. In some cases, you may need to have the shots several weeks prior to leaving for your destination. Who needs them? Why? Where can you get them? The process is actually easier than you may think.
When to Go
In most cases, it is best to get travel immunizations between four and six weeks prior to your scheduled trip. Your body needs this amount of time to process such vaccinations. To become effective, you need to get the right number of doses as well. This may mean getting a series of shots over a period of weeks. If you have less than four weeks prior to your scheduled date, you still need to see your doctor. You may still benefit from getting these shots or medications. This also depends on the type of vaccine you are getting.
What Type Do You Need?
The Centers for Disease Control provide recommendations for those who are traveling. This differs based on each country you are traveling to during your trip. Recommended vaccinations are those that provide protection from infectious diseases across borders. These are a good idea to have but are not required.
Required vaccinations are regulated by the International Health Regulations. This includes yellow fever vaccinations for those who are traveling to areas of tropical South America and sub-Saharan African areas. It is also a requirement for those traveling to Saudi Arabia to get the meningococcal vaccination if they are traveling during Hajj, an annual event in which thousands of people converge in the area.
Additionally, children, pregnant women and those who have chronic health conditions should also speak to their doctors about their needs. You need to ensure you are getting the best possible type of protection for your health and this may mean additional vaccinations or a different type. It is a good idea to check the travel regulations set forth by the CDC for the countries you are visiting, too, to make sure you know what the risks are.
When it comes to travel immunizations, you can get them from your doctor or a hospital. However, do not overlook visiting your local urgent care. Many of these facilities can help you to get the immunizations you need right away without a long wait. Find out what type of shots you need to keep yourself and your family healthy when you are traveling overseas. Your life may depend on these types of treatments.