When you come and visit above mile high, you might feel a little bit off at first. Altitude sickness is a real thing up here in the mountains. When doing all the great activities that the beautiful state of Colorado has to offer, be aware of potential altitude sickness symptoms, especially if you are exerting yourself. A couple of different variables could trigger the sickness. Cold, dry air and high sun exposure (both common in the Colorado high country) are a few known conditions to trigger it. Also young kids and the elderly are at a higher risk for experiencing altitude sickness.
Signs of Altitude Sickness
Some signs to look for if you think your are experiencing altitude sickness are headaches, loss of appetite, vomiting and an upset stomach, feeling weak, dizzy and disoriented, and lastly not sleeping well. No need to cancel your vacation if you think you may be a candidate to get altitude sickness (and keep in mind that you may be susceptible even if you have visited the area without issue in the past).
Here’s How to Prevent Altitude Sickness
- Drink an abundance of water
Drinking a large amount of water before you feel symptoms will be a key attribute to avoiding altitude sickness
- Climb high, sleep low
If possible when picking where to stay, pick a place in a lower altitude than your day to day activities. Sleeping at a lower elevation will help ease the process of adjustment.
Some doctors can prescribe altitude medicine to alleviate the affects of altitude sickness. There are also certain herbal supplements that you can look into as well.
- Taking it easy
If you are feeling under the weather even a little, don’t go after that 14er. You have to keep your health a priority, so opt for something lighter.
- Breathing exercises
It has been shown that breathing exercises will help the adjustment to altitude a lot. So start taking deep breaths and holding them in. It will also help to relax.
- Oxygen Bar
A lot of mountain towns have oxygen bars. So take some time and get some oxygen into your lungs and relax before exercising.
Remember when coming to the mountains there is a possibility of getting altitude sickness. If you use some of these tips they can save your trip in the long run. If you are coming from sea level, it may be harder for you to adjust so take it one step at a time. If you have any health problems, consult with your doctor before coming to a high elevation part of the state.