Before going to India, you should take some health care precautions.
About the vaccines:
You have to know that vaccines are not mandatory to go to India. First of all, make sure you are up to date on routine vaccines: measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine, diphtheria-tetanus-pertussis vaccine, hepatitis B and polio vaccine. Then, it is highly recommended to get vaccinations against hepatitis A, mostly for European that are less than 70 years old. Typhoid is also adviced as you can get contaminated with food and water in India. There is one vaccine against both typhoid and hepatitis A.
If you go for a long time in the north of India, you should get the vaccine against meningitis, especially for people under 40 years old. For those who want to do trekking and other outdoor activities such as camping, biking etc, the vaccine against rabies is recommended as it can be found in dogs, cats, and other mammals. The last vaccine is against Japanese encephalitis, it’s a disease spread by mosquito bites, so it is particularly advisable if you are traveling in the rural area and during the monsoon season.
About the medication:
It is very important to take a daily malaria treatment, a disease also spread by mosquitoes. In big cities, you will not have to worry about it, but as soon as you leave for smaller cities and rural area, you have to be more careful, especially during the monsoon season. Also, it is only during the night. So when the sun goes down, make sure to wear full protective clothing, and use mosquito repellent on your clothes and your uncovered skin (two different sprays for clothes and skin).
These headache precautions are also very important for the other disease that is spread by mosquitoes like dengue fever, chikungunya virus, etc. Moreover, you must prepare a first-aid kit. In that kit, you should have medication against diarrhea, stomach ache, headache, nausea. You should also have antiseptic and bandages, solar and after sun lotion. Furthermore, since you shouldn’t drink tap water, there is either pill that can filter the water or a straw that will filter almost all of waterborne bacteria and parasites.
Also, if you are taking a daily treatment on an everyday life basis (such as contraceptive pills for example) do not forget to bring enough medicines for the length of time you stay abroad. Finally, it is advised to bring your prescriptions with you written in International Nonproprietary Name in case there is a problem at the airport’s customs office or if you run out of medicine once you are in India.
All of these healthcare precautions will cost you a lot of money (in France more than 300€ only for vaccines !) but if you want to spend a good trip without worrying about getting sick, these preventative measures are necessary.