There's a lot of excitement about visiting Denver, except for altitude sickness! We at the mile-high city of Denver want you to have a wonderful time in our town, so we've prepared this easy to read guide for altitude sickness help and prevention in Denver. We want you to be feeling good also when visiting outlying areas, such as Breckenridge or Vail.
It is a well-known fact that awareness regarding altitude sickness in Denver is crucial to ensuring an enjoyable trip. Prevention is the best way to ensure you avoid altitude sickness, and we'll dive into 3 ways you can do so. Even if you never happen to experience altitude sickness while in Denver, you're highly likely to experience it when at higher elevations in other areas of Colorado you may visit – so be prepared.
Denver, Colorado is one of the most desirable cities in the United States. It's beautiful, it's full of vibrant and exciting activities, and it has a wonderful climate. In addition Colorado is one of the most beautiful states in the US and attracts thousands of tourists each year, the state is home to several magnificent natural wonders, including Pike's Peak, Garden of The Gods, Rocky Mountain National Park, and more.
Nicknamed the Mile High City, Denver is 5,280 feet above sea level. If you plan on visiting Denver (or even Colorado Springs), and you aren't already acclimated to the altitude, it's important that you take the necessary precautions. Altitude sickness can cause headaches, nausea and sometimes even hospitalization if not properly prepared.
Altitude sickness, which can also be known as acute mountain sickness (AMS), is a temporary condition that occurs when a person climbs to higher altitudes. It can affect anyone who rapidly ascends to high altitudes of 8000 feet, but also can occur at 5000 feet like in Denver, and it's most common among people who travel from sea level to higher altitudes.
You may ask will I get altitude sickness in Denver? Yes, you definitely can get altitude sickness in Denver, although usually on the mild side and not severe like in the Colorado Rocky Mountains.
Altitude sickness is a type of hypoxia that occurs at higher altitudes with less oxygen, like with Denver at 5280 feet high. Hypoxia is a deficiency of oxygen in the body. When people travel from lower altitudes to higher altitudes, their bodies need time to adjust to the lower levels of oxygen in the atmosphere. Altitude sickness can occur when this adjustment happens too quickly or too slowly.
As air pressure decreases with less oxygen in Denver at 5280 feet high, the body works harder to breathe and distribute oxygen throughout the body. During this period, which may last for several days or even up to their whole visit, some people experience symptoms of altitude sickness. Denver altitude sickness symptoms usually start within 24 hours and include:
Famously known as the mile high city, Denver altitude sits as 5,280 feet high. As one of America's highest cities, Denver is considered high-altitude according to Mountain Medicine.⁴
The altitude in Colorado only increases as you enter the Rocky Mountains. From Breckenridge to Vail and Aspen to Telluride, ski resorts and mountain destination go to elevations between 7,000 and 14,000 feet. Hence the nickname 14'er for mountains above 14,000 feet.
Here are a few of the high-altitude cities of Colorado:
Whether visiting Denver or one of the other many high-altitude cities of Colorado, it's best to be well prepared for the altitude sickness.
25%-30% percent of visitors, according to the University of Colorado School of Medicine, get acute mountain sickness when heading to the mountains. Some references state as high as 40% of visitors. There's a lower risk to Denver visitors, where about 8%-10% percent of visitors get altitude sickness.
Altitude sickness can be a problem for anyone visiting Denver, a city that sits at the elevation of one mile above sea level. Here are some tips to avoid altitude sickness if you're traveling to Denver, as it's best to know how to prevent altitude sickness if possible than to deal with the nasty symptoms! Here's 3 ways to avoid and prevent altitude sickness:
As a local product, our Zaca Hydration + Liver Aid chewables are sold throughout Colorado for many altitude usages. It's a popular choice among locals, and visitors alike.
Try our sugar-free Recovery Chewables now for your next trip!
1. Don’t let altitude sickness ruin your trip to Colorado
2. Effect of high altitude (7,620 m) exposure on glutathione and related metabolism
3. Altitude Sickness in Denver: Symptoms and Remedies
4. Effects of high altitude on humans