Healthy Living in Thailand

Healthy Living in Thailand

Have you ever had a year without anyone in your family getting sick?
You won’t in Thailand, either. However, there are fine medical facilities and treatment options and even young children generally take well to practicing those little extra precautions if they are presented as only a small part of the package of living in a foreign country. Every drop of water is not a deadly agent of disease, and the more relaxed you are, the easier it will be for them.

According to a young American missionary who came to Thailand in 1870, Bangkok was one of the healthiest cities in the tropics. Bangkok was hot, but not so hot as treeless paved streets, high-rise concrete structures, giant glass edifices, and car and air-conditioning exhausts have made it today. The cooling trees and oblongs of yesteryear have given way to wide thoroughfares that are intolerable noisy, dusty and polluted.

The situation in Chiang Mai today is mostly a matter of degree. You’ll find a lot of dust suspended in the air. If you ascend the temple mount of Doi Suthep overlooking Chiang May today you can often see how the cloud of polluted air hangs over the city – a yellow-grey blanket trapped by the surrounding hills. Cities along the Gulf coast are spared this kind of air pollution, for the most part, as sea breezes sweep the particulates and smoke away. There, it will be fog, as the overheated land air meets the cooled and damp sea air. But then, of course, the waters off Pattaya are as polluted as Bangkok’s air!

One supposed solution to the penetrating heat of the tropics is to install air-conditioning units in your office, house, or flat, or even just your bedroom. This has the virtue of cooling and may also reduce noise from outside, such as other people’s air-conditioners and road racket. But air conditioning may dry out your nasal passages, making you susceptible to colds and nosebleeds.

You’ll noice that many Thai’s dust white and yellow powder on their arms, chest, and particularly their faces. They’ve had a cooling bath and want to dry their skin thoroughly to defend mould, mildew, and other fungal infections.

The polluted air can lead to lung and bronchial infections Expat parents don’t have to worry as much as some Thai’s do about lead poisoning, as most expat children don’t play by roads where it is was to accumulate a dangerous dosage Their children, unlike many Thai’s have an opportunity to play in their compounds or at school in park-like conditions.

Air pollution is significantly and measurably less above the fifth floor level, but street noises may be louder, depending on your building’s location.

Immunisations and Vaccinations for Living in Thailand

All of these need to be consulted about with a physician or a paediatrician, but the following are suggested for Thailand.

Polio Vaccine.
Single dose taken orally or by injection. Booster shots should be given every ten years. If the last polio vaccination cannot be remembered, it is time to have another booster!

Tetanus-Diphteria (TD) Vaccine.
Single dose injection, every five years, Again if the last one cannot be remembered, it’s time for another!

Gamma Globulin.
Injection every four to six months for a general immune system boost.

Hepatitis B Vaccine.
A series of injections. Highly recommended for those living in Thailand.

Typhoid Vaccine.
Aside from the usual shot, there is now available and oral dose, which comes in a four-pill pack.

Rabies Vaccine.
Recommended for all residents of Thailand.

Japanese Encephalitis Vaccine.
Thailand is one of the countries infected with this disease. Vaccination is recommended if you will be a Thai resident for longer than thirty days.

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