I was able to sit down and have a nice, long (if sneeze-filled) chat with Sneezy Dwarf. Here are some tips he shared for preventing and preparing to be sick at Disney. Hopefully, you will never need these tips, but we wanted you to have them just in case.
I believe in hand washing before every meal and using hand sanitizer in between. But I’ll take it one step further…When you eat at a buffet, wash or use hand sanitizer AFTER you get your food because you have just gone through a line using scoops and spoons that everyone touched, right before you eat. Just something to think about.
Don’t share food and drinks, even with your family members.
It’s really easy to dehydrate, so make sure you drink lots of water, especially in warm weather. Disney sells shoulder strap water bottle holders, or you could easily make one yourself. You can carry a water bottle and fill it up at meals. When you have a meal, choosing water over soda or coffee will help you to stay hydrated. (Symptoms of dehydration are: you feel sick to your stomach, light headed, possibly will have a headache) If you do get dehydrated, find someplace cool to rest and try to drink water. A wet cloth can help, but a resort tub of water would be even better.
Blisters are a common problem at Disney because you are walking more than you are used to. To prevent them, wear shoes that are broken in, and that are meant to be walking shoes! It’s a good idea to bring a second pair of walking shoes on your trip, left back at your resort, in case you get caught in a sudden downpour and your shoes get drenched. That way you won’t have to wear wet shoes the next day. Your socks are important, too! Buying athletic socks is a good idea, but thicker cotton socks will also work. If you must wear thin socks, at least wear 2 pairs.
We make sure to walk a lot before our trip to get our bodies ready. If there is something you use at home to put on your pressure points, or roll on your back, bring it to your resort so that you can use it after a long day of fun.
Try not to carry too much into the parks with you. You might think you can’t survive without a backpack full of stuff, but that backpack will just get heavier throughout the day! It might really give you back problems to wear it for so many hours. If you must carry a pack, make it a small one, or put it onto the stroller if you have one. You can also rent a locker for the day and stick it in there. But the best advice is not to bring one unless you must.
Bring cotton balls. If you feel like you are getting a cold, earache or sore throat, wear cotton balls in your ears to bed that night. I don’t know why, but it works!
Vitamin C is good stuff. I personally use airborne when I feel like I’m getting sick. Airborne and cotton balls!
Bring the essentials, and leave them back at your resort just in case. I’m thinking of:
anti-biotic ointment for cuts
sport ice pack
plus kinds of these that are specifically for kids
aloe for sunburn
an inhaler if you use one, even rarely
allergy medicine (there are so many wonderful plants blooming all year around at Disney!)
medicine for motionsickness
chest rub for colds,( I also put it on feet and behind ears and on the back of their neck.)
If you get sick at the parks, they each have first aid stations you can use.
Wipe down your resort room with anti-bacterial type wipes.Use wipes on lamp toggles and light switches,the thermostat, the clicker, the phone, the handles on the door and sinks, the fridge door, the tub, the toilet handle and seat.
In this same vein, bring slippers or flip flops to wear in your resort room. The lady cleaning your room has been walking through all the bathrooms on your floor before she got to your room, and walked where your bare feet just were.
It can be hard, but try to get enough sleep while you are away! Your body needs to recharge, so don’t stay out for Extra Magic Hours and then get up for Early Entry the next day! You are on vacation!
In order to prevent constipation, make sure you and your kids are getting enough fruit and veggies. You may have to really work towards this on a Disney Vacation, but it’s worth it. If you don’t think your kiddos will eat their veggies at the parks, then pack fruit cups and real fruit juices for them to eat as a bedtime snack back at the resort.
It should go without saying, but bring sunscreen if there is a chance you’ll need it. Hats are also good for keeping the sun out of your eyes, and off your face.
If you get sick enough to need a doctor, or a prescription filled, there are medical services available from out side of Disney, who will come to you at your resort. They will also bring medicine if needed. I’ve never used them, however I have asked about them. Doctor2yourdoor is available 24 hours in that area.
If one of the parents are sick, let them stay back at the resort and take the kids either to the parks or to Downtown Disney. If one of the kids is sick, one parent should take the others out to the pool or parks, while the sick one watches TV or sleeps. This way, the trip is not a total bummer and those who aren’t sick are getting fresh air. We have done this, and the sick ones left behind found they could get more rest without their well family members bouncing off the walls. Once they are well enough to visit the parks, they may still be weak. Either plan to make a shorter day of it, or fork over the money for a stroller so that they can sit down in the shade and not have to walk too much. We had to do this one trip. The Disney Double strollers are able to hold older kids as they’re sturdy and large.
I have purposely left out some things that might lead you to believe that I’m a germaphobe. Wait, you DO think I’m a germaphobe?! Well, Sneezy ISN’T a germaphobe, and look where that has gotten HIM! Just sayin’.