Expatriate Life Overseas Healthy?
Can you drink the
speaking, yes - and no. Life is healthy, and no, don't
drink the water (sometimes and usually).
overseas is no more and no less healthy than life
back home. Though life is often much less
stressful and less hectic than your family and
friends "back home" experience.
Medical Care - some places - sometimes
overseas will spend much more time with you. They
aren't pressed by the huge numbers game of Public Health
Service programs, HMOs or clinics. You won't usually
find the doctor pushing you out of the exam room - or
running out to the next customer (whoops, I meant
younger, the author had some serious health issues that
never really got resolved - until meeting a couple of
great doctors overseas. They spent the time with him to
talk about the problems, explained and reviewed some
options, and left the course of action up to him! You
won't feel that they are eagerly "sharpening their
knives" and wondering how much all this could be worth.
Just the author's cynical outlook, maybe?
countries, you will find that things aren't always as
clean as you would like them to be - and bathroom
cleanliness is not common in many parts of the world,
nor is regular hand washing. So, you will find
yourself, wisely, washing you hands MUCH more than you
used to - and it is a very good habit for keeping
yourself healthy. Carry a handkerchief with you as many
lavatories won't have any towels at all - or often have
a community towel for all to use. Carry a small
pack of tissues as many countries don't stock toilet
tissue in the facility for you.
not good to drink - depends on the country, of course.
Ask! Most countries though have cheap and easily
accessible bottled water. The author gets five-gallon
(18.9 liter) bottles delivered to my door for less than
about US$1 each. And he buys the EXPENSIVE water. The
cheap water is about US30 cents. Most places you can
gargle and brush your teeth with tap water - some places
you can't - it is important to ask your coworkers.
And you will see many people do this. But often the
problem with the water may not be bacteria and other
living things in the water, it is often pollutants or
heavy metals - things which are not affected by
boiling. Want a recommendation? Good water is cheap -
buy it. Your health is too valuable. You'll quickly get
used to the routine. It is simple and easy. You won't
even notice after a few weeks when you have the habit
Caveat: I'm not a
doctor - but I am careful with my health. I am, after
all, on the high side of my 50s. All the above is just
my opinion. Consult with your personal physician
for any thing more serious than the sniffles.