How to enjoy a healthy and safe spring break

Spring break trips should be fun, exciting and memorable. There are a number of steps you can take to prepare and make sure your trip is exciting and memorable for all the right reasons. Follow these 6 tips to help yourself and your family and friends stay safe and healthy this year.

1. Plan in advance

Whether you’re traveling 50, 500 or 5,000 miles, there are certain things worth thinking about before you go on your trip:

  1. Do you need vaccinations?
  2. If you have dietary restrictions, will you be able to eat the food?
  3. If you’re taking medication, do you have enough to last you through your trip?
  4. What types of weather, events, or possible transport disruptions may you encounter at your destination?

2. Get active

Vacation time is precious. You spend enough time sitting down at work or school, so make sure you make the most of your freedom. Hike, bike, play volleyball, swim or do whatever sounds enjoyable to get you moving. Your heart, muscles and joints all benefit when you embrace an active lifestyle and there’s no time like spring break to start some good habits.

3. Don’t drink too much

Alcohol can often play a central role in a spring break trip. While it can be fun to relax with a cocktail or glass of wine, you don’t have to overindulge to make it a party. The hangover is rarely worth the previous night’s partying and can often keep you from enjoying daytime activities. Hangover symptoms include:

  • fatigue, weakness
  • thirst
  • headache & muscle aches
  • nausea & stomach pain
  • vertigo
  • sensitivity to light and sound
  • anxiety & irritability
  • sweating

The best way to avoid a hangover is by drinking lots of water and limiting the amount you drink.

4. Eat well

Spring break is just that: a break. From responsibilities, from routine and from deadlines. While this break from everyday life can feel liberating, you don’t need to swear off all of your usual habits. If you’ve been eating well and reaping the benefits, try to stick to those habits. Seek out fruits, vegetables, lean meats, poultry and fish. Try to limit the amount of salt, sugar and saturated fats you eat.

5. Respect the sun

Sunshine and heat can feel really good after a long, cold winter, but spending too long in the sun can be a bad idea. If you haven’t enjoyed heat from the sun in a while, your skin will probably be extra sensitive to sun burn and other unpleasant side effects. Wear sunscreen with at least SPF30 protection when you go outside to avoid premature aging and skin cancer. Wear sunglasses with 100% UV ray protection.

6. Be safe and watch your step

There can be certain temptations to be wary of during spring break trips. If you’re thinking about a high-risk activity – like scuba diving, rock climbing, mountain biking or bungee jumping – make sure you can access safety equipment. If something seems too risky, maybe it’s best avoided – remember that unintentional injuries are among the top ten causes of death for Americans of all ages.