10 Tips On How To Prevent Hair Loss

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By Peter King

mansmileAre you concerned about hair loss? Maybe your hair has been falling out in clumps? Do you suffer from itchy scalp? The truth is, all of us lose some strains here and there, especially if we let it grow longer and/or apply a lot of product to it. However, hair loss can be controlled with a smart hair care routine, sensible diet, and awareness. With that in mind, here are 10 tips on how to prevent hair loss.

1. Hair Loss Equals Lack of Vitamins–If you are losing a significant amount of hair on a regular basis, it is indicative of a health issue within the body. In all likelihood, you are not getting enough and/or the right vitamins for your body to work efficiently. Foods rich in Vitamin C and high in antioxidants, such as citrus fruits, kale, and berries, will likely solve most hair and scalp issues and help put your body in balance.

2. Coconut Oil Is Key–The benefits of coconut oil have been lauded for ages. It is a crucial ingredient for most hair care regimes. If in doubt, just take a look at the Hairlossable Hair Loss Blog and read over the list of “Best Hair Loss Shampoos for 2017.” A scalp massage with coconut oil will help promote healthy hair growth. This release should be performed from the roots to the tips to help maximize the effects of the head massage.

3. Alternative Remedies Have Their Place–Acupressure, which is an alternative therapy but popular in the mainstream, is also believed to stimulate noticeable hair growth. A prime example of this application is Balayam, which is an acupressure therapy that is known to increase circulation to the scalp and stimulate hair growth. For more information about this technique, search for the padmasana pose and review the routine.

4. Eggs Are Not Just for Breakfast Anymore–Eggs are a nutrient-rich food source that contains abundant proteins and minerals. Some people swear by egg whites and olive oil for healthy hair. All you need is the white of one egg and a teaspoon of olive oil. Mix until it is a paste-like consistency and apply it to the hair and scalp.

5. Yoga Is Not Just for Fitness Enthusiasts–The art of yoga is also known to help hair growth. This healing therapy is believed to cleanse our system–both body and mind, as well as open blockages, which, in turn, bolsters oxygen levels and circulation, which nourishes the hair follicles.

6. Keep an Eye on Your Diet–In order to keep your hair healthy, you should follow a sensible diet. Proteins are an essential part of any balanced diet. to stimulate hair growth significantly. Foods, such as cheese, yogurt, beans, milk, nuts, grains, chicken, and fish, will help stimulate hair growth and should be included in your daily diet.

7. Environmental Factors Can Be a Burden to Your Hair–Exposure to environmental factors, such as dust, pollution, heat, and humidity, can really wreak havoc on your follicles. it is imperative that you take steps to protect that mane. Tricks, such as tying your hair up or covering the head with a hat or scarf, could keep your hair out of harm’s way.

8. Regular Hair Treatments Can Upset Your Scalp–If you are someone who frequently colors, perms, and/or applies other treatments to their hair, you should be aware that this is a common cause of hair loss.

9. Iron Is Essential for Healthy Hair–Lack of iron in your diet weakens the hair at the roots and results in excessive hair loss. As such, it is important to incorporate food like soy beans, red kidney beans, spinach, eggs, fish, seafood, chicken and/or meat into your daily diet to ensure sufficient iron intake.

10. Stress Is a Killer–It’s true, stress can and does kill. To spare your follicles and yourself from an early demise, it is important to keep your stress levels in check.

As you can see, hair loss is more common than you might think, but it can be controlled via dietary adjustments, exercise, changes to your hair care routine, and/or alternative treatment options. As such, these tips will not only help fight hair loss but avoid it altogether.

How To Keep Your Medical Practice Free Of Infectious Pathogens

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By Veselina Dzhingarova

didyouknow?Maintain a state of the art waiting area for your patients featuring chairs with non-porous surfaces and plenty of trash receptacles to keep your office cleaner. Instruct your workers to wipe down all areas with antibacterial wipes to help prevent germs from replicating and spreading to other areas. Unfortunately, some illnesses spread quickly, even in the cleanest of medical facilities. Working with an infection control consultant will aid you in identifying potential hazards within your workplace as well as managing outbreaks before they become detrimental to your business. Remember that hiring a team of healthcare professionals who know how to treat patients is one thing but keeping your medical practice free of pathogens requires a different type of expert.

Analyzing the Risk of an Outbreak

Your medical practice may have signs posted to help inform patients and staff of their duty to clean up after themselves, but it only takes one person being infected for an outbreak to emerge. Consider how quickly pathogens can spread after someone uses the facilities and fails to wash their hands. Those germs can be spread to the furniture and even your examination rooms over the course of just one or two hours. Infection control consultants can help you in identifying how bad a potential outbreak would be at your medical facility given your current practices. That information can also be used to prevent future contamination and the spread of dangerous pathogens.

Preventing Contamination

Installing equipment such as touch-less paper towel dispensers and toilets that automatically flush could be the key to stopping contaminants from being spread at your medical facilities. The suggestions that are given to you by an infection control consultant will be personalized and based on the size and specific structure of your practice. Medical facilities that are used to treat and care for pregnant women or the elderly, for example, may be urged to take additional precautions as the people they serve are more at risk.

Monitoring the Cleanliness of Your Facilities

After getting an assessment, you will need to have your facility checked to ensure that there is little risk of a serious outbreak. Cultures may be taken from various surfaces to check for pathogens and your staff may even be surveyed on the level of cleanliness at your business. Whether assessments are continuous or infrequent, it is vital that your medical facility is looked after by someone who specializes in infectious disease risk factors. One particularly bad flu season could lead to an outbreak in your practice, sickening your staff and causing you to temporarily shut down. Whenever you have questions about pathogens and infectious diseases you should go to a consulting firm that can give you specialized advice.

No amount of hand sanitizer is going to rid your medical facilities of all germs and pathogens, but you can still keep the risk of outbreak very low. Keep up to date on the spread of diseases in your region so that you can act fast before a crisis develops. Most importantly, maintain good cleaning habits that are streamlined to work with your particular medical specialty.

Common Caregiver Injuries And How To Prevent Them

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By Monica Mendoza

grandparentchildCaregivers come from all walks of life. There are professional caregivers and family caregivers. They work hard to care for those who cannot care for themselves. And yet, too often, it is the caregivers themselves who forget their own well-being. Some caregivers even find themselves encumbered with their own health issues and injuries.

Studies show that in 2015, over 170,000 incidents of documented illness or injury happened in the private nursing and caregiver industry. This translates to roughly 6.8 incidents per 100 workers. Clearly, caregiver injuries have become common and affect a significant percentage of healthcare workers. The most common injuries recorded are sprains and strains, cuts and punctures, fractures, soreness or pain, bruises, and multiple trauma.

These injuries are classified as musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs). They affect the body’s joints, muscles, nerves, ligaments, and tendons, particularly the bone structures that support limbs, which are the back and the neck. In order to address these injuries, The Hospital Patient and Healthcare Worker Injury Protection Act was created. It requires healthcare facilities to adopt practices that will reduce the injuries of healthcare workers, especially for those who have to move and lift patients.

Employers of healthcare workers need to make sure that they create measures to avoid injuries. These are some of the activities and situations caregivers should try to steer clear from:

1. Doing Heavy Lifting

Caregivers need to support heavy weights whenever transferring supplies or moving a resident. MSDs occur when caregivers pull or strain their muscles or injure their tendons, ligaments, cartilage, or joints. Employers should make sure that caregivers are equipped with proper gear, like a back brace or weight belt to assist them with the load. Often, healthcare workers are discouraged from wearing these items because putting them on and taking them off can take up a bit of time and effort. However, employers can reinforce this policy to make sure that caregivers follow this rule. Employers can also provide the facility with patient lifts and slings to help lessen the impact of transferring patients or changing their position.

Another precaution that can be employed is to give caregivers the proper training and techniques for lifting. If the caregiver needs to bend down to assist a senior when eating or bathing, advise them to place themselves in a more comfortable position, such as squatting or sitting. They can also be taught to stretch every day to relieve muscle tightness and to make them more flexible.

2. Contact with Illness

Those that need care are often sick or weak. Caregivers often risk constant exposure to bacteria and viruses that may make them more susceptible to contracting illnesses. Also, exposure to blood and other bodily fluids increases a caregiver’s risk of getting sick.

One of the best ways to prevent the spread of diseases is to practice frequent hand washing. Microbes and bacteria may be minimized, if not eliminated, through proper hand hygiene practices such as washing with water and soap and using hand sanitizer. Also, to prevent viruses from entering their bodies, workers may be required to wear surgical masks. Make sure that all staff are vaccinated regularly. And see to it that they get shots for common illnesses such as flu to prevent the occurrence of these diseases.

3. Overworking

It is a reality that communities or homes that provide care may be understaffed due to limited budget. This means caregivers are often overworked — a state that could lead to health issues and illnesses caused by stress. These issues can take a toll on the employees’ physical and mental health, which could then result to lack of sleep, poor eating habits, and increased vulnerability to illnesses.

If it is not at all possible to increase the number of caregivers, one way to avoid overworking the employees is to provide them with regular breaks to rejuvenate themselves. They should be working regular shifts of 8 to 10 hours, and should not be required to be on call outside of the residence. If the caregiver works for over 10 hours, they may make more mistakes since they are too tired. When this happens, employees and residents become susceptible to injury or harm. Make sure that the caregivers are well-rested and ready for their shift.

Choosing a career in the healthcare industry may entail health risks. However, issues that come from heavy lifting, exposure to illnesses, and understaffing can be addressed to prevent further complications and burn outs. Policy enforcement, proper training and equipment, and care for caregivers can go a long way in preventing these common injuries.

How To Get Your Kids To Ditch The iPad And Play Sports

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By Maria Myraine Yap

boyvideogameResearch shows that children with access to electronic devices are more likely to be overweight. A survey by REAL Kids Alberta showed that Grade 5 students with access to one electronic device were 1.47 times more likely to be overweight compared to kids with no devices in the bedroom. The number jumped to 2.57 times for kids with three devices.

If your kids aren’t exactly the athletic type, there is still hope. Love for sports can be taught given the proper encouragement and reinforcement. Sometimes, all it takes is a visit to the park or a cool outfit. For example, you can get your kids excited with custom socks from Strideline or a ticket to watch their favorite team. If they don’t have a favorite team? Take them to see your favorite team, mom & dad! Getting your kids to ditch the iPad for sports isn’t at all that difficult.

Not sure where to start? Here are some tips to get your kids away from the computer and into sports.

1. Find A Sport They Enjoy

It goes without saying (but we’ll say it anyway) that a sport needs to be enjoyable for kids to commit to it. If your child isn’t into the same sports as you are, don’t force it. Find your child an activity he/she truly enjoys. Chances are, they’ll be more excited for it.

2. Get Them Excited With Cool Gear

Every child wants to be the cool kid on the block. What better way to show up than with awesome gear? Great gear isn’t only cool, it boosts performance and reduces risk of injury as well. That’s a win-win in any book! Check out https://www.strideline.com/ for custom socks that will help them stand out from the competition.

3. Help Them Nurture Friendships With Active Kids

twokidsunParents often underestimate the power of peer influence and peer pressure. According to Judith Rich Harris, a leading American psychologist, external influences from friends, pop-culture, and society have a profound effect on a child’s growth and development.

That said, it is absolutely vital to surround your kids with good influences. Take them to little league and encourage them to join the school varsity team so that they can bond and cultivate friendships with other active children.

4. Lead By Example

Children tend to copy what they see. So if you spend your days in front of the TV or computer, expect your kids to do the same. Studies show that active parents make for active kids. Kids whose parents hit the gym at least twice a week grew up to be more active than those whose parents never exercised.

Committing to your child’s health and wellness means cultivating an environment conducive to exercise and recreation. Sometimes, that requires getting of the couch and breaking a sweat. Whether you like it or not, parenthood comes with certain responsibilities, one of which is being a positive role model to your children.

In this day and age of electronics and digital media, encouraging your children to play sports can be difficult. However, with the right environment and an active upbringing, sports can be an integral part of their everyday lives.

How To Get At The Roots Of Memory Slips

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Interesting topic from June from PRWeb and Harvard Health Publications, please share your thoughts below…..

brainA variety of factors can contribute to general forgetfulness. They include poor health, medications, sleeplessness, lack of exercise, stress, depression, and alcohol use.

Age-related forgetfulness, although annoying, is common and essentially harmless. Nevertheless, pinpointing its exact cause isn’t always easy. But according to the June 2015 Harvard Men’s Health Watch, asking some simple questions can reveal some of the reversible causes of memory problems and provide the basis for a helpful conversation with a doctor.

“Having an honest discussion about memory and getting tested may help open up discussions about other areas of health too,” says Dr. David Hsu, a geriatric psychiatrist at Harvard-affiliated Brigham and Women’s Hospital.

After middle age, many people start to worry that simple forgetfulness may be the harbinger of Alzheimer’s disease. But sometimes the causes are more mundane. They include fatigue from an unrecognized medical condition, the effects of sedating medications, lack of good-quality sleep or regular exercise, and the effects of chronic stress.

Dr. Hsu notes that a perceived change in memory performance may simply be due to a slight slowdown in thinking speed that comes with aging. “Remembering takes a little more time, but this is entirely normal,” Dr. Hsu says. Getting frustrated with memory slips won’t make them stop; actually, it could make it harder to remember things.

Read the full-length article: “What’s causing your memory slips?”

Also in the June 2015 Harvard Men’s Health Watch:

* Yoga for men

* Who should be tested for an abdominal aortic aneurysm?

* Weight gain and heartburn

How To Benefit From A Low-Glycemic Diet

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This article is courtesy of PRWeb, please share your thoughts in the comments section below…..

didyouknow?A lower-glycemic-index diet reduces sudden increases in blood sugar. To get the benefits of such a diet without having to look up the glycemic index of foods, cut back on white flour and white rice, white potatoes, and added sugars.

The glycemic index is a number that indicates how rapidly the body digests a particular type of food and converts it into blood sugar (glucose). The lower the number, the slower the carbohydrate-to-blood sugar conversion. A lower-glycemic-index diet may offer important health benefits for men, such as a reduced risk of heart disease and diabetes, explains the April 2015 Harvard Men’s Health Watch.

Anyone can benefit from the driving force behind the glycemic index simply by avoiding highly processed foods, like white bread, white rice, and sugary desserts. These raise blood sugar rapidly, but are also independently tied to poorer health.

“Eating a minimally processed diet is going to cover a multitude of sins,” says Dr. David Ludwig, director of the New Balance Foundation Obesity Prevention Center at Harvard-affiliated Boston Children’s Hospital and a leading expert on the glycemic index.
Spikes in blood sugar from eating foods high on the glycemic index have been linked to obesity, diabetes, and heart disease. Some research suggests that eating a diet that emphasizes low-glycemic-index foods can improve health, although this hasn’t yet been definitively proven.

But in the meantime, eating lower-glycemic-index foods can still contribute to a more healthy diet. Here are a few suggestions from

Dr. Ludwig for eating lower on the glycemic index:

* Eat grains that are as minimally processed as possible, such as brown rice, or unconventional whole grains like bulgur, millet, farro, and wheat berries.

* Instead of starchy white potatoes and white rice, eat sweet potatoes or whole-grain pasta.

* Reduce added sugars. Although caloric sweeteners like white table sugar and high-fructose corn syrup are only moderately high on the glycemic index, they are independently associated with obesity and heart disease.

Read the full-length article: “Healthy diet: Is glycemic index the key?”

Also in the April 2015 issue of the Harvard Men’s Health Watch:

* Tips for selecting a high-quality hospital

* Living with atrial fibrillation, a common but treatable heart condition

* Secrets to a healthy retirement

The Harvard Men’s Health Watch is available from Harvard Health Publications, the publishing division of Harvard Medical School, for $20 per year. Subscribe at http://www.health.harvard.edu/mens or by calling 877-649-9457 (toll-free).

How To Workout On A Budget

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By Joel Cortez

BikingYou don’t have to spend a lot of money to get in shape. Here are some tips to help you get fit without dishing out the dough.

1. Look for alternatives. It’s important to recognize that there are plenty of exercises you can do that don’t cost a dime. Running, hiking, and walking are free – once you’ve bought a good pair of shoes. And if you can’t afford the expensive monthly gym membership, purchase a couple of good workout videos and some dumbbells. P90X, or any of the workouts will give you good results without the cost of a gym. They aren’t cheap, but if you stick with the programs, you’ll see a change in your body and your fitness levels in a matter of weeks.

2. Use free apps to track your calories, water intake, and exercise. Here are a few free (or very inexpensive) apps to consider. Each of these is easy to find via a search in iTunes.

– Lose It! By FitNow
– FitDay Mobile
– Nike Training Club
– iTreadmill Pedometer Ultra with PocketStep
– C25K
– Runkeeper
– Strava

3. Get social. Use your favorite social media tools as free support groups. Post your workouts or weight loss success on facebook and twitter – or do a google search for a weight loss forum where you can meet people with similar goals.

4. Find free workouts online. Yoga Today offers a new free yoga workout each week. And iTrain has a 6 Week Slimdown for Women program available via iTunes.

5. Use Pinterest to find the very latest tips, deals, and ideas on health, fitness, and weight loss. Pinterest is rather addicting, and you can find lots of inspiring advice, as well as coupons and deals on fitness equipment, diet programs, and healthy recipes.

6. Shop smart. Know when it’s worth it to fork out the extra money for organic foods, for example. Doing so is easy if you follow these two rules of thumb: Buy organic if the food is near the top of the food chain,high proteins are a good example(in other words, buy organic dairy, eggs, and meat.)For Peanut Butter & Whole Wheat Crackers-the multi-grain wheat crackers and whole wheat are fiber-rich and unrefined, and with your dab of peanut butter, you have a tasty and wholesome snack with adequate protein, which will keep you full for longer. Who says a weight loss diet is at the expense of taste?

As for fruits and vegetables, buy the following items in their organic form: apples, bell peppers, celery, cherries, peaches, nectarines, grapes, pears, potatoes, raspberries, spinach, and strawberries. This list is often referred to as the “dirty dozen” because researchers say you can slash your exposure to pesticides by as much as 90 percent by always buying these foods in their organic form.

7. Proteins for body building. Creatine is a nutrient that is obtained naturally in foods including meats and other proteins. Everyone has creatine in their muscle cells as it is the nutrient which enables us to use our muscles for heavy tasks. Taking creatine as a body building supplement means that your muscles can take on a greater workload so to speak. It enables you to work harder and lift heavier weights, meaning that as your muscles are worked harder, and therefore will grow faster.

Protein shakes and protein bars are another essential body building supplement. Protein is the nutrient which helps us to grow, so is obviously essential for muscle growth. Protein shakes and protein bars provide an extra boost of protein which not only helps with muscle building but also helps weight management, a good immune system, and bone support.

Purchasing protein in bulk from bodybuilding.com using a coupon will also save you money as you try to achieve your weight loss/fitness goal.

How To Simplify Your Diet And Have More Energy With These 5 Golden Laws

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By Sergie Belos

exerciseballWe all know that getting regular exercise, managing stress, and getting sufficient sleep are among the most important rules of combating illnesses, fatigue, and poor health. What many people take for granted is the fact that our dietary habits have a direct influence on our energy levels. They also play a role in how susceptible we are to illnesses, how well we rest, whether we sufficient energy to exercise, and even the quality of sleep we get. In this post, we will highlight the five golden laws of nutrition you should implement to simplify your diet and to always be alert, energetic, and well rested throughout the day.

1. Prioritize nutrient-dense foods in your diet
Optimal energy metabolism, the process by which food is converted to energy, demands plenty minerals and vitamins. The smart way to unlock the energy stored in every cell in the body is to fuel it with adequate nutrients. Therefore, eating foods that are rich in natural minerals and nutrients is the most effective way to boost metabolism and keep your body and mind performing at its peak at all times. A simple formula to go about this trick is to consume foods with a lot of nutrients per calorie serving such as beans, vegetables, fruits, seeds and nuts, lean animal proteins, and whole grains.

2. Ditch the deprivation diet
If your friends or the Internet has convinced you to do your body a disservice by skimping on calories in entirety, you ultimately decrease your metabolism and your body will power down in an effort to conserve energy. Starving yourself in the name of ‘dieting’ will cause you to feel sluggish, sleepy, and lethargic all the time. Even if you’re trying to lose weight, the slowing metabolism will cause the body to burn fewer calories, slowing down the weight loss process. To stay and look healthy, you must adopt smarter ways to manage your energy levels and enhance metabolism, not slow it.

3. Lose weight the easy and right way
It is a no brainer losing those few extra pounds on your belly, butt, and hips is the key to restoring your health. However, it is how you lose it that matters the most. One of the best and most hyped ways to lose weight fast and vouched for by respected health expert Doctor Oz is by using garcinia cambogia. A very popular and effective weight loss solution that has worked for millions of people around the world. Garcinia cambogia is a herbal supplement, made with 100% natural garcinia cambogia extract, a fruit native to the South East Asia.

4. Breakfast should be your healthiest meal
Yes, it is very easy to skip breakfast—many even feel virtuous for doing so. However, this does not save you calories, it just hurts your energy levels and health in the long run. Studies have shown that a good nutritious breakfast not only boosts metabolism, it also keeps your mind alert and your belly satisfied until lunch. For a healthy breakfast diet, swap out bad processed breakfast foods such as pastries, cereal, donuts, and waffles for healthier alternatives such as fresh fruits or fruit juice, whole grain bread, or even leftover casserole or lasagna.

fruitsalad5. Yes, Snack, but smartly
Depending on how demanding your day job is, maintaining a constant supply of food energy throughout the day may be the best way to maintain your blood sugar and energy levels. Smart snacking is a great way to replenish the body and keep away sluggishness and cravings for junk foods. Note, however, that you cannot achieve this by raiding the vending machine for 100-calorie snacks every half hour; it is best to prepare your snacks for the day by packing real food with complex carbs, and proteins. Also, eat natural food snacks with fiber to help you deal with overeating and those with good fats such as nuts to prevent energy dips throughout the day.

There are many ways to eat right and stay healthy to keep your energy levels up and prevent sluggishness, lethargy, and even diseases. Trying out these five golden rules of nutrition is the best help you will get to lead a healthy life the smart way.

How To Get Beach Body Ready For Your Vacation

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By Connor Christopher

BikingGetting beach body ready is important when you’re going on vacation, as you always want to look your best when you’re away. Whether you’re losing weight or you just want to tone up a little bit, getting your body beach-ready is going to be hard work. Whether you need the best workouts, treatments or diet plans, we’ll give you the best tips on how to get beach body ready for your vacation. If you’re heading to America for your vacation, you’re going to be surrounded by stick-thin women and toned-up men when you’re at the beach, and as well as enrolling on the visa waiver program to enter the country, you’re also going to want a beach body.

Diet

Focusing on your diet is extremely important when it comes to getting a beach body. If you can’t train or you don’t have the motivation to hit the gym, looking at your diet is extremely important. Losing body fat and weight is easy if you’re eating the right food. Eating lots of fish for the good natural oils that are perfect for brain food as well as boosting protein levels, and cutting out the sugar is all important. Sauces such as tomato sauce, soy productions, barbecue sauce, honey mustard and more are a huge culprit when it comes to piling on the calories. Adding healthy fruits and vegetables, and packing on the protein are all important to getting beach body ready.

Mentality

Your mentality is exceptionally important to help you get beach body ready. Picturing the end result and how you want to look is a sure fire way to help you when it comes to trying to get beach body ready. If you have old pictures of yourself if you were a shape that you desire to be now, stick them on the fridge as a reminder of what you can be. Alternatively, get a picture in your mind about how you want to look and keep it there. That way, nothing will come between you and your end goal.

Exercise

saladplateLosing weight isn’t the only way to get beach body ready. You also want to get yourself into a training regime in order to effectively tone up, giving you that ideal beach body. If you are trying to be in the best shape possible, you should do cardio every day. Weights for women are also a good way to train your body weight. Exercise is inevitable if you want to get beach body ready, and although it may seem like a chore at first, you will be surprised how quickly you will get into the swing of things, particularly if you really want to reach that beach-body goals.

Keep Training

Even when you’re on vacation, it’s important to try and keep training no matter what. All-inclusive buffets and relaxation can put you off, but if you suddenly stop, you may find that the beach-body you built up will slowly disappear, leaving you without that lovely body throughout the rest of your vacation. Maintaining that with healthy eating while you’re away or having an occasional jog on the beach in the morning is the perfect way to maintain your beach body throughout your vacation, so you don’t quickly fall back into bad habits. Keep training, and you’ll get to where you want to be.

How To Get Health Insurance When Traveling To Europe

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By Connor Christopher

healthyheartbpWhether your reasons for traveling to Europe are for business or for pleasure, you want your trip to run as smoothly as possible. Hopefully you won’t get ill or sick during your European adventures, but in the off chance you do, it’s best to be prepared for the worst but hope for the best. Make sure you renew your European Health Insurance Card today, because it’s better to have it and not need it than to need it and not have it.

Provided you’re a citizen of the European Union, you are entitled to an EHIC which entitles you to free or discounted medical treatment whenever you visit an EU country. The card entitles you to the same rights as the locals of that country, so if their medical care is free, then so is yours. Over 5 million EHIC’s are set to expire over the coming year, so if you already have one, make sure to check the expiry date before you set off on your travels.

The European Health Insurance Card is completely free, you just need to fill out a simple, online application or calling the NHS on 0300 330 1350, and it will be process and sent to you within days. The card is then valid for five years at a time but only covers one individual person, so if you have a child under 16, include them on your application and you’ll receive an EHIC for each of you.

While in Europe, the EHIC will cover treatment for chronic and per-existing medical conditions throughout the duration of your trip. Your EHIC must be presented when you require treatment, so make sure you carry it on your person at all times. The best way is to put the card in your bag or wallet as soon as you get it and then forget about it until you need it.

The EHIC is currently accepted by EU states Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Southern Cyprus, Czeck Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Republic of Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain and Sweden, as well as non-EU countries Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland.

Bear in mind that while the European Health Insurance Card provides valuable protection, it is not a replacement for travel insurance. It is highly recommended that ensure you have both in order to reduce the large medical bills, delays in treatment and not to mention saving yourself a large deal of stress in the event of a medical emergency.

You will pay the exact same as an existing resident of the country you a visiting, so if they are expected to pay for their medical treatment, then you will be too.

If you’ve registered for you EHIC but the card doesn’t arrive before you’re set to leave on your European trip, then be sure to call the NHS Overseas Healthcare tea, and they’ll advise you what you need to do.