Studies have shown that more than one in five people who travel on planes suffer from a cold or the flu after the flight. So what’s the cause of this post-flight sickness? And how can we avoid getting sick when we fly?
Here is the Skyscanner Australia guide to staying healthy when flying.
Apart from a severe bout of turbulence, or a cabin packed with crying babies, there’s nothing more disconcerting than sitting close to someone on a plane who insists on sniffing or who can’t stop sneezing. You can almost see the microbes coming your way.
Bacteria on planes.
Many people insist that airplanes are plagued with bacteria and viruses that are out to get them. They are on the armrests, in the seat pockets, all over the magazines, lurking in the toilet cubicles, and hovering in the air, ready to pounce. And, to some extent, they are right.
Microbiologists have tested planes and found that germs are commonplace, and can survive for hours or days after the passenger who brought them on board has departed.
Some of the 200 or so viruses that can cause the common cold can infect people for up to 18 hours after they have left the body, and flu viruses can infect people for up to eight hours after being let loose.
As well as causing the common cold and influenza, these bugs and viruses can cause everything from skin diseases and upset stomachs. Studies have found MRSA and E. Coli can live on the plane for over a week.
Where are the dirtiest places on a plane?