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Virginia Department of Health

Stay Safe and Healthy While On Vacation

vacation destination

Photo by Pedro Szekely / CC BY-SA 2.0

Vaccinate before your vacation. Make sure your vaccinations are current. Many places in the world recommend specific vaccines before you visit. Some diseases that are not common in the United States still exist in other parts of the world. You should get vaccines at least two weeks before you travel.

Virginia Health Information
'Virginia Health Information' is a resource for patients and consumers looking to learn about and compare options on everything from obstetrical services, to heart care, to pricing information on commonly performed medical procedures. Virginians can use VHI information to make informed health care purchasing decisions and as the basis for an informed conversation with their health care providers. Learn more>>

National Heatstroke Prevention Day – July 31, 2014

child in car seat

Every year across the United States, children die from being left alone in hot cars. Heatstroke deaths can occur in temperatures as low as 57 degrees. Never leave your baby alone in a car, even if the windows are partly open, or the air conditioning is on. For more information about the dangers of heatstroke, visit or call 1-800-732-8333.

Staying Healthy During Hot Weather

Heatstroke Prevention

Summer temperatures in Virginia normally climb into the upper 90’s and even reach over 100 degrees at times. The hot temperatures and high heat indexes can cause ill health effects.

The body normally cools itself by sweating. But under some conditions, sweating just isn't enough. Prolonged exposure to heat can cause cramping, heat exhaustion, heat stroke and even death. It is important to stay hydrated and seek cool temperature environments until the heat subsides. 

Read more tips to avoid heat-related illness during the summer.

Recreational Water Illness and Injury Prevention

Recreational Water Illness and Injury Prevention

Planning to cool off at the swimming pool or plan a trip to the beach? Learn about ways that swimmers, parents, pool owners and operators, and public health can maximize the health benefits of water activity, while avoiding water-associated illness and injury:

woman gardening

7 Ways to Help Prevent Mosquito Bites

Mosquitoes can make you sick through their bites. Mosquitoes spread malaria, dengue fever and chikungunya through their bite. Prevent mosquito bites by controlling the number of mosquitoes around you and protecting yourself from their bites. Remember to:

  1. Wear long, loose and light-colored clothing.
  2. If possible, stay inside when mosquitoes are biting.
  3. Use bug spray with the smallest percentage of DEET needed for the amount of time you are exposed to mosquitoes. Use according to the manufacturer’s directions and DEET should not be applied to infants under 2 months old.
  4. Turn over or get rid of containers in your yard where water gathers, such as old tires, potted plant trays, buckets and toys.
  5. Remove standing water on tarps or flat roofs.
  6. Clean out birdbaths and wading pools once a week.
  7. Clean roof gutters and downspout screens.

Last Updated: 07-31-2014

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