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I have always found it astonishing how many people set off on a trip around the world without even the most basic medical or first aid kit. People go to all sorts of lengths to ensure they have the latest and greatest Gore Tex boots and jacket, the best camera with all the possible lense combinations, the trendiest backpack.... but what happens when they are camped by the road in the middle of Arizona, and discover in the middle of the night that their body is violently rejecting the burrito that tasted oh so good hours earlier at the last gas station they passed? What happens when they hire a motorbike in Thailand and leave half the skin from the right hand side of their body, in fine layers down a mountain road? What happens when it takes every ounce of energy just to crawl to the toilet, and when they get there, they don't know which end of their body to point at the bowl first? Okay, I'll stop there! In no particular order, this is what I will be taking with me, in the way of medical and first aid supplies..

Number one is for number two's- Diarrhoea tablets; two kinds, each one for a specific purpose. Enough said.

Sleeping tablets. I've only used them twice in the past, but was very glad to have them when they were needed.

Malaria tablets. I'm not going to use them as a preventative. If you are very conscious of mosquito protection, you can generally get away with just carrying them as a treatment, should you develop the symptoms.

Mosquito repellant- the strong stuff, not for wimps!

Antiseptic drops- many, many uses.

Gastrolyte sachets- for replenishing electrolytes lost when suffering diarrhoea.

Stemetil- for nausea. No, not to bring it on. To prevent it!

Antibiotics- Cause we all love antibiotics.

Antihystamines- for allergies, motion sickness etc.

Antifungal cream- unless you plan to start a garden in your groin.

Iodine tablets- for purifying water that you are unsure of, when there is no alternative source.

Survival blanket- seems extreme, but takes up almost no space, and only costs a few bucks. I had to use mine on an icy night in Canada, and will never travel without one again.

Sinus tablets- easier to carry a pack with you than try to get a prescription in Timbuktu.

Headache tablets- cause there's always plenty of things to give you a headache. Anyone who has ever drunk Arak will vouch for that!

Sunscreen- you use it at home. Why get burnt just cause you're away?

An assortment of bandages, plasters and swabs- for obvious uses.

Some people may like to carry condoms.*hey, my Mum might be reading this!*

I may yet even shelling out for a little travel thermometer, to self diagnose a fever. Do you know the difference betwen an oral thermometer and a rectal thermometer? *the taste!*

And of course, a copy of Dr Deb's book 'Travelling Well', an invaluable reference tool as you travel. 'Travelling Well', your bible for enjoying good health while you travel. You'd better check it out! Click here for more details.

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