IAMAT |International Association of Medical Assistance to Travellers| IAMAT |International Association of Medical Assistance to Travellers|

Travel and Depression

Photo By: Erika Uffer

Know how to deal with depression and mood changes

Everyone has mood changes. However, a very low emotional state (depression) and extremely elevated mood swings (as occurs in bipolar disorder) affect how you think, behave, and function. Sudden mood changes can disrupt travel or cause a relapse in persons with mood disorders. In addition to managing travel stress, recognizing the warning signs of depression and mood changes and how to get help abroad, are key to a safe trip.

Factors affecting mental health during travel

Even if you don't have a prior history of mental illness, travel stress, mood changes, anxiety and other mental health concerns can unexpectedly affect you and potentially disrupt your trip.

Studies show that psychiatric emergencies are the leading cause for air evacuations along with injuries and cardiovascular disease.

Your mental and physical health prior to, and during, a trip determines how well you will cope with travel stress. Consider the following:

IAMAT's travel and mental health series

The Depression and Mood Changes whitepaper is part of our Travel and Mental Health Series. Inside you'll find tips for managing depression and mood changes, including how to travel with medications. Other whitepapers in the series address travel stress, travel and anxiety, travel and substance use, and travel and psychosis, all available from our eLibrary.


Travel Health Journal