Many travellers around the world keep Nepal on their bucket list of must-visit destinations. But, your travel to Nepal or any of the new destinations means you might encounter a new environment, different stimuli and organisms; that might cause you to fall sick. So, to fully experience Nepal on your visit, you need to take precautions to keep yourself safe and healthy.
For this, you need to carry some medicines with you and here we recommend some that will help you during your travel to Nepal. [Note: This excludes the round of annual vaccines you take, vaccines recommended by your country before travelling and compulsory Covid vaccines.]
1. Over-the-counter medications
Many ailments and sicknesses are easy to solve with a pill or two. So if you are travelling and you want to avoid falling sick or cure your ailments quickly, you should carry some over-the-counter medications such as acetaminophen (Tylenol), aspirin (paracetamol/Flexon), ibuprofen (Brufen/Advil) that you can use as painkillers or a pill to relieve yourself from fever.
Other OTC medicines can be antibiotics like azithromycin and ciprofloxacin or liquid enzymes like Aristozyme and even Digene tablets or liquids for any digestive or gastronomic issues. Since travellers have different palettes; you might likely face some issues while having food on the go.
2. Water purification tablets/equipment
Like food, water too can give you some unwanted ailments and digestive problems. So, if you want to travel to Nepal and will be on the road for the major part of your travel, carry some halazone iodine (Tetraglycine Hydroperiodide), chlorine (Sodium Dichloroisocyanurate), chlorine di-iodide tablets to avoid water-borne or water-related diseases. At the very least, you do not have to worry about drinking unhygienic and contaminated water.
If you are a foreigner during your travel to Nepal, you might encounter some allergies either because of dust or pollens. For this, if you carry OTC antihistamine medicines like Brompheniramine (Dimetane) Cetirizine (Zyrtec) Chlorpheniramine (Chlor-Trimeton) that treat symptoms such as itchy and watery eyes, runny nose, hives, hay fever, conjunctivitis and reactions to insect bites or stings.
4. Cold and flu medications
Other OTC medications that you can carry during your travel to Nepal for cough, cold or nasal congestions are Aleve, Tylenol, and Nyquil among others. You can carry some spray or balms, vapour rubs and even sancho, a multi-purpose local herbal essential oil.
5. First aid kit
Carrying a first aid kit with you can be very helpful not only during your travel to Nepal. Not every wound or pain has to be checked by medical professionals in a hospital. Also, first aid kits are to give your immediate attention to your ailment and minimise the injury or pain.
For this, you can carry a small kit with you including some adhesive bandages, gauges, cotton, crepes, band-aids, and pain sprays for your injury or ankle sprains are common while trekking and hiking.
6. Altitude sickness medications
Nepal is famous for its mountains, so if you travel to Nepal for trekking or mountain climbing, make sure that you also carry Acetazolamide or Diamox tablets with you. Since the mountains are at a significant altitude that you might not be familiar with, you might develop (acute) altitude sickness while trekking beyond 3500 m above sea level. It is not a guarantee but you can take measures to avoid it from your side.
7. Insect repellent cream
Nepal reports infrequent cases of dengue, malaria and even encephalitis. If you do not want to fall sick during your travel to Nepal because of mosquito bites, you need to take precautions.
Apart from this, Nepal is home to many insects and pests that you might not be familiar with. A bite or contact with the insects might leave you sick. So do carry some insect repellent creams like Ultrathon, Picaridin and Odomos to prevent getting malaria and dengue.
It is not a medicinal choice. However, you are exposing yourself to the sun even more during your travel to Nepal. The more you climb up, the more vulnerable will you be to the ultraviolet rays. The harsh sunrays can leave you with sunburns at the very least. So carry sunscreen with you with at least SPF 30+ and UV ray protection glasses if necessary.
Also if you are travelling to the plains of Nepal, then you will also need sunscreen to protect yourself from the harsh weather and exposure to the sun.
9. Regular prescription medicines
Apart from all these recommended ones, if you are suffering from any kind of health condition for the time being or long term, please make sure to carry your regular prescribed medicines or any other medical equipment you might need on a daily or regular basis during your entire travel to Nepal. DO NOT leave it up to the chance to get the medicines in (remote) Nepal.
Take care, carry your medicines and travel safely.