Altitude sickness, or acute mountain sickness (AMS), occurs at high altitudes. Moderate altitudes as low as 2000 meters (6562 feet) are high enough to create signs of altitude sickness in some people, especially those with certain medical problems. Symptoms usually come on within 72 hours of arriving at altitude. Visiters coming from sea level experience the most severe symptoms.
When visiting high altitude destinations, be aware of the most common symptoms:
- sleep disturbances
- shortness of breath
- loss of apetite or nausea
The best bet to reduce onset of altitude sickness is to ascend slowly to altitude. Unfortunately, flying to your destination prevents a gradual ascent. If you suffer any of the symptoms listed above after arriving at destination, seek medical treatment. Untreated, altitude sickness can lead to fluid in the lungs or pressure on the brain.
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