When it comes to older children, travel can be an excellent opportunity to teach them about things relating to their own health and public health on the whole. Traveling abroad can present a lot of opportunities to raise discussion on these kinds of matters, and it can be a topic kids will find interesting and enlightening. Here’s how you can teach your kids about health matters through travel.
Learning About Public Health
If you yourself are in nursing or another medical field and are interested in educating other people about health, working in community health policy, or being in the field of epidemiology, then you can follow up on this by doing masters in public health online, which is available from the University of Arizona. Of course, you don’t need to be a specialist with an MPH degree to teach your kids – just be well informed from your own research online.
Here are some examples of ways you can use aspects of your trip to help them learn about how health risks differ in other countries, and about how important public health is in general.
Why Do We Need Vaccinations or Medicine to Go to Some Places?
One of the less fun aspects of a foreign vacation can be getting travel jabs or taking things like malaria tablets. When you first announce to your kids that you are going to an amazing destination where they are going to have a great time, it can be a good time to open up the discussion about how you find out before you go somewhere if you need any vaccinations or medicine, and explain why this differs depending on where somewhere is and the diseases and parasites that exist there.
Show them how you look this up and that way this can be a chance to teach them about health and travel even if the destination you have picked is jab free. As with any vaccinations, your child may be afraid, and so it is important to make sure they understand why the jabs are important and that it is worth it to get to travel and experience other places safely.
Why Do We Need Travel Insurance?
Buying travel insurance can be another thing to teach your kids about. It may not be the most riveting thing about the vacation to talk about, but learning that there are processes people need to have in place in case they get sick or injured while they are in another country can be useful for them, and also reassure more nervous children.
Can We Drink the Water?
Another thing to talk to kids about regarding public health when you travel is that in any new destination, it is important to check that the water is drinkable and to use bottled water even for brushing your teeth if it is not. Depending on where you go, this may not be an issue. In most European countries, for instance, tap water is fine. However, it is a good thing to teach them to check and to talk about as a public health matter.
These are just a few of the ways a foreign trip can open up discussion about public health, and even if you are going somewhere where none of these things really apply like Canada or the UK, getting them in the habit of finding out about these things is a good idea.