As ravers we take away so much from a music festival; new friends, lasting memories and a lot of pictures to prove both.
However there is one thing we often take home that we would rather not – the “music festival flu.”
The festival flu is the sickness that often follows the week or two after being at a festival, leaving you feeling awful and needing urgent care. It’s typically derived from lack of sleep, nutrition, and pushing your body to its physical limit. But like most sicknesses, it can be prevented.
Here are a few music festival health tips that can help prevent that post-festival sickness:
This is one of those things that is easier said than done. After the music stops in the evening, the festivities usually continually until early in the morning (assuming it is a camping festival). While you may be tempted to stay up like everyone else it is important to listen to your body. Usually it will thank you the next day.
Try to get at least 6 hours of sleep so the next day you can enjoy the music instead of falling asleep to it. Because it can be so loud, try some ear plugs. Also put something over your face, as light can often shine fairly bright through your tent, even in the middle of the night. Air mattresses are highly recommended, since sleeping on the ground can make your body achy the next day.
Maintain Basic Hygiene
With everyone running around and places to go be, it can be easy to overlook basic hygiene. Electronic dance music festivals are often in areas where there is a lot of dust, which means that’s what you’re continually breathing in for 3 days (TomorrowWorld 2014 any one?). Make sure to blow your nose a lot and wash your face.
When you think about how many hands you touch and the amount of porta-potties you enter, it’s also important to wash your hands a lot. Not washing your hands is a huge reason people get sick. A miniature bottle of hand sanitizer can make all the difference.
This is often something people struggle with a lot at music festivals. Since many festivals don’t allow you to pay in cash but rather with tokens, it’s hard to give up the cash to provide yourself with a few meals. Take it from us, it’s worth the money. Without full meals, your body doesn’t have enough nutrients to run off of and can really attack your immune system. Snacks can only take you so far.
If you are eating snacks, make sure that what you brought will sustain you with energy. Opt for foods high in bio-available nutrients like apples, bananas, and oranges. Chips and cookies will only lead to a harder crash at the end of the day.
This is the most important of them all.
Be sure to drink water in between every couple alcoholic drinks. With all the dust, dancing, and walking, festivals make you more prone to dehydration than normal. Also, try not to share drinks with other people. Take a reuseable cup or bottle that is specifically yours so you aren’t putting yourself at a risk for more germs.
This is one of those things you wouldn’t normally think about, but can have an impact on sickness as well. Especially for festivals that are getting into the fall, it may be warm during the day but cold at night. Change in weather can activate your sinuses and allergies. For this reason, check the weather before going to a festival to make sure you pack correct clothes. You don’t want it to be 50 degrees at night and all you have is a tshirt and one blanket!
Subjecting your body to the marathon that is a weekend music festival will inevitably catch up with you.
These tips will allow you to make the best of your time while you’re there, and be healthy enough to go back into the real world afterwards.