Tips for a Safe Spring Break

Whether you're going away for spring break, or staying right here in Ithaca, you're likely looking forward to a departure from routine and time for relaxation. Check out the tips below for a healthy (and safe) break.

24/7 phone consultation: Remember, no matter where you are, you can consult with a medical or mental health provider 24/7 by calling us at 607-255-5155.

If you're traveling ...

  • Watch for CDC travel notices regarding areas you plan to visit.
  • Make sure you bring your health insurance card with you. (Student Health Plan members can download their card here.)
  • Be sure to have an ample supply of your prescribed medications (e.g., birth control pills, inhalers, mental health medications) in their original, clearly labeled containers. 
  • Stop at our pharmacy or self-care vending machine before you go if you need fist aid supplies, sunscreen, condoms, or other health supplies.

No matter where you spend spring break ...

Recharge your batteries:

Get good sleep, spend time outside, and and connect with others to relax and refocus so you can finish the rest of the semester strong.

When enjoying the sunshine:

  • Be especially vigilant about protecting your skin during the hours of 10 am to 4 pm.
  • Wear a hat, sunglasses, and sunscreen (SPF 15 or above) to avoid burns. (This is especially important if you take birth control pills or other medicines that increase sun sensitivity. Contact our pharmacy if you have questions).

When drinking alcohol:

  • Limit your intake; watch your BAC (blood alcohol concentration). Be aware that being in a different environment and out of your regular routine can cause you to experience alcohol differently.
  • Prevent dehydration by drinking lots of non-alcoholic, non-caffeinated drinks throughout the day and especially before heading out to parties.  
  • Alternate alcoholic beverages with hydrating drinks to help you stay hydrated and help lessen the severity of a hangover.
  • Watch for signs of an alcohol or other drug emergency. Call 911 for help, or consult with us at Cornell Health if you are unsure (call 607-255-5155 24/7).

In sexual situations:

  • Contact our pharmacy in advance if you need to fill a prescription for birth control pills or other contraceptives before break.
  • Protect yourself from infection: if you choose to have sex, use a latex barrier like condoms or dams to help reduce your risk of STIs.
  • Have emergency contraception on hand in case of contraceptive failure (e.g., condom breaks).
  • Take precautions and avoid situations or people that may place you at risk for harm. Be especially careful when alcohol is involved.

Take care of your emotional health:

If you're feeling stressed or vulnerable, stay close to friends and family members, or reach out for additional support. You don't have to go it alone. Look out for others' well-being too. If you have concerns, tell someone.

Be good to your immune system:

Go easy on things that tax your immune system (e.g., alcohol, tobacco, and all-nighters) and instead indulge in naps, fresh air, and plenty of relaxation.