How many times have you sat down, laptop open, headphones on, ready for peaceful travel and it turns out the person sitting right next to you has a severe cough? You finally get to have that holiday vacation and you spend the entire trip with a sinus infection. These helpful tips hopefully will give you a peaceful and restful holiday travel season without the nuisance of a sinus infection.
Airplane Travel and Holiday Infections
Actually, airplane travel, significantly increases your risk for developing a sinus infection. This is because there is a large congregation of people in a small area with the same air being recirculated. Statistically, there will be a significant number of passengers who have an upper respiratory tract infection on the plane you are on. The air on the plane is also dry which reduces the natural nasal moisture defense mechanism.
Wear a Mask
It can be helpful if you are willing to wear a micro-particle filtration mask. Masks that are available at home-improvement stores for example in the paint section block very small particles and can reduce your exposure and risks.
Avoid Physical Contact
Avoiding physical contact with any object that a sick person is touching is also quite helpful. For example, if they ask you to help hand their items of trash to the flight attendant this will significantly increase your risk. Using a hand sanitizer following any contact with an item you may have touched from a sick individual can also be helpful.
Having poorly controlled allergies will reduce your local defense mechanisms and therefore it is important to make sure your allergies are well-managed prior to the holiday travel season.
Use Allergy Medications
Allergy medications such as nasal steroid sprays, nasal antihistamine sprays, oral antihistamines can be used in advance as a prevention. Allergy drop therapy based on skin testing in our office is much more effective as it allows your body to create natural antibodies to physically block the allergic reaction. This also does not come with the typical side effects of medication such as drying of the sinus lining.
Getting plenty of rest, taking daily vitamins, nasal saline rinses, and avoidance of over consumption of alcohol or also helpful hints for avoidance of sinus infection during travel.
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