Advice of the camino of Santiago
USEFUL SUGGESTIONS OF AN ANONYMOUS SPANISH PILGRIM
SHOES AND CLOTHES
They have to be comfortable, suitable to the person. It is also recommended a light change of footwear; washable and easily dried clothes. To walk well it is necessary to wear heavy socks of natural fibre: wool, cotton, … avoiding the synthetic fabric, that prevents the transpiration, favouring fungi (athlete’s foot) and other skin infections.
SUN AND SKIN
Over-exposure to the sun should be avoided especially when there is a stifling heat. Otherwise, damage to the head (insolation, sun-stroke, hyperthermia, etc.) and to the skin (sun burn, excessive perspiration, etc.) can be caused. A straw hat and a solar cream with a very high protection factor superior at 20 are usually adequate.
PRESERVATION OF FOOD AND DRINKS
Our local aqueducts provide drinkable water. It is better to avoid any other not recognised source. Our suggestion is to drink at least 2 litres a day, to avoid dehydration, of natural water and not sparkling water. During stifling heat and intense perspiration, integrate your diet with dried fruit,… Isotonic drinks rich in salt are available. Cooked dishes have to be consumed as soon as possible. Fruit and vegetables should be well washed with drinking water. It is appropriate to eat 4/5 snacks along the way and in the evening have a complete meal (without overdoing it!).
Have a shower at the end of the daily walk with special attention to the intimate hygiene. Better to avoid contact with the personal accessories of other people (combs, razors, soaps, etc).
PROGRESSIVE ADAPTATION TO CLIMATE
It is better to walk in the early hours of the morning, rest during the hot midday and walk again in the late afternoon.
The anti-tetanus vaccination is recommended.
RECOMMENDED MEDICAL EQUIPMENT
- Iodine Povidona (Betadine)
- Analgesic-Antipyretic drugs (Paracetamol)
- Topic Cortisone ointment.
ASTHENIA, TIREDNESS, CONTRACTIONS
- intense physical effort without previous training
- excessive perspiration
- incorrect positions
- excesses of performance
- general tiredness
- cramps and muscular pain
- pain and stiffness in the joints
- adequate hydration with miner salt
- ration the effort
- don’t walk too much!
- hydration (water, salt, sugar)
- application of a topic antiseptic (Betadine)
- in case of an open wound go to a medical centre to see if an anti-tetanus injection is advisable.
ABRASION – TENDON INFLAMMATION
- a physical trauma (knocks, “faulty step”)
- local pain, principally owing to the movement of the joints
- oedema, inflammation
- ecchymosis, functional impotence
- difficulty or impossibility to move
- abundant washing with cold water or ice, not applied directly on the wound but wrapped in a roll of cotton cloth … to avoid inflammation and reduce the pain
- absolute rest of that anatomic area to avoid complications
- the local sanitary centre should be able to provide a check up.
SUN-STROKE, SPASMS, HYPERTHERMIA by INSOLATION
- wet and very hot days
- not adequate precautions (solar protection, hydration, salts)
- has the daily journey been too long?
- warm and reddening skin
- temperature superior to 38°, sometimes over 41°
- painful muscular contractions
- protect the head with a hat/cap, etc
- physical relaxation
- in case of intense muscular pain: use a painkiller (Paracetamol).
The skin can be damaged causing, for example, BLISTERS.
- intense rubbing
- inadequate shoes
- lack of perspiration
skin deterioration with:
- reddening skin
- swelling with liquid (blisters)
- adequate and comfortable clothes and shoes
- correct anti-tetanus
- abundant washing of the interested parts of the body with water or physiological liquid.
PILGRIMS WITH SPECIAL HEALTH CONDITIONS
If you have special health requirements, take your drugs with you. If you suffer from chronic diseases (diabetes, hypertension, …), consult your personal doctor before leaving. If you are allergic to some drugs or insects … take an explanatory note with you.
Consult: the pilgrim's pharmacy
"Al fratello Antonio, mio vescovo, auguro salute. Approvo che tu insegni teologia ai frati, purché, a motivo di tale studio,tu non smorzi lo spirito della santa orazione e devozione, come è ordinato nella Regola. Sta sano". Frà Francisco
Link: Vita e opera di Antonio
Qui, in terra, l'occhio dell'anima è l'amore, il solo valido a superare ogni velo. Dove l'intelletto s'arresta, procede l'amore che con il suo calore porta all'unione con Dio." - Sant'Antonio di Padova, Sermones