Africa is home to just about every disease known to man. If that weren’t enough, there are countless reptiles, insects, spiders and mammals, that would like a piece of you. That’s the bad news. The good news is that as long as you are sensible, and take adequate precautions both before and during your stay, you can minimise these risks to an acceptable level.
Most areas advise vaccination against several diseases before you travel. Your local health centre will have the up to date information on the particular destinations you are planning.
Never drink local water straight from the tap. Either use bottled water, or as a last resort boil the tap water first.
Use a good quality insect repellent, and a mosquito net when you sleep. Age-old tips such as banging your shoes upside down before putting your foot in them in the morning are probably of little value, but you never know what might have crept in during the night. If nothing else it keeps you alert to the possible dangers around you.
Keep an eye on where you’re walking, especially away from the towns and cities, and if you are in an area of wildlife follow the game ranger’s instructions exactly.
Finally, ensure you are well covered by a medical travel insurance, so that you can call for help should the worst happen.
- Yellow Fever