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Preparations for Students Going Abroad

Posted July. 07, 2008 09:01,   


There are many students going abroad to study foreign languages during their summer vacation. But there is always a risk that these young students would get sick and have a hard time alone abroad.

Therefore, parents sending their children abroad should have their children’s health checked and vaccinate them before their departure. Information on diseases and vaccination can be found on the Web site of the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (dis.cdc.go.kr/foreign/Foreign_TourInfo.asp).

After checking information on diseases common in the relevant country, parents should have their children vaccinated against the disease a month before sending them abroad. As some countries require a certificate of vaccination, checking it in advance is necessary.

If the destination is either China or Southeast Asia, vaccination against hepatitis A is a must. Children should be vaccinated against typhoid as well, if they are heading for Southeast Asia, in particular.

If they are going to stay in areas with a lot of mosquitoes, they need preparations against malaria and dengue.

In such cases, parents should give the children an ointment or a spray type mosquito repellent and tell them to cover their bodies as much as possible when going to mountains or fields.

For malaria, taking a preventive medicine is required. Min Jeong-hye, director of the Korean Association of Pediatric Practitioners, said, “Anti-malaria drugs are effective only if you take them consistently for two weeks before going abroad and for two to four weeks after returning to Korea.”

In case of cavity, it is better to have them treated in Korea. Even with an insurance plan designed for students, cavity is not going to be covered and will cost much.

It is also a good idea to give children painkillers for a possible toothache. A sudden, stinging toothache can be temporarily alleviated by taking painkillers or applying an ice bag on the cheek.

If you have a stinging toothache due to being on an airplane, you need to take painkillers or hold cold water in your mouth to reduce the pain. You need to see a dentist right after coming back to Korea.

Diarrhea is also a petty but bothering condition. It is particularly common in Southeast Asia. Most of it is enteritis caused by bacteria. Diarrhea normally subsides after continuing for three or four days, three to five times a day.

To avoid diarrhea, it is advised to avoid raw food, and only drink bottled or boiled water.