Healthy air travel is a subject I have touched on before. Despite the phenomenal strides we’ve made in science health and technology, air travel is likely to infect on average 20% of all passengers during cold and flu seasons. But here is the shocker &ndash what we believed to be the culprit is actually harmless..at least mostly.
The air inside the plane is recirculated with high efficiency HEPA filters which capture 99.9% of virus and bacteria. In other words, the air in the plane’s cabin is cleaner than the air in most office buildings. There is an exception to this however – when the plane is idling for long periods, with the circulation system turned off, or even while passengers are boarding or exiting. Infections can spread like wildfire during those times. The cabin is enclosed without fresh air and we breathe each other’s germs. Hopefully the worst contaminant will be a cold, which most immune systems can fight off, but if a serious pandemic is aboard, this is the time to wear a surgical mask or a scarf coated with a spray of aromatherapy antibacterial. Also remember to avoid touching your eyes or nose with bare hands. A freshly opened pack of gentle wipes should be used to scratch an itch or blow your nose. In fact, this last rule is among my cardinal rules for arriving healthy. Keep hands away from your face, always.
Please consider that all mites(infections carrying objects) are in your seat, headrest, tray tables, magazine pockets and pillows/blankets. The toilet is the ultimate winner – full of germs, so don’t ever go barefoot, don’t ever sit on the seat, use towels when you touch the water levers and the door knobs to exit. Wipe all surfaces with Chlorox based antibacterial wipes and spray the seats with my aromatherapy spray.
Most danger comes from the mouths, hands and noses of your nearby travel mates. People seated one or two rows around and the seats beside you. It’s simply due to the velocity of a single sneeze and its ability to spread. The air on the plane is extremely dry and dry mucus membranes are a perfect environment to allow in bacteria. Hydrate by drinking as often and as much as you can. Using saline nasal drops is just as important.
Wipe off the tray table with a disinfectant wipe and spray some of the below natural disinfectant recipe on the seat, armrests and seat-back pockets (it won’t damage the fabric and it’s just as effective).
Build up your immune system before your trip with vitamins, good food and sleep. I believe in flu shots and for older or more vulnerable people, pneumonia shots as well. Clean your hands often and use a disposable tray table cover. Try to change seats if you have a sneezer/cougher nearby and avoid the middle seat if at all possible.
Stretch and move every hour or two in order to get your circulation moving and prevent blood clots. Open the vent above and let the purified air pass in front of you, redirecting all airborne contaminants away from you.
I bring my own down pillow and soft blanket inside my carry-on. I place their plastic bag behind the pillow, get my soft blanket, earplugs and cover my face.
Aromatherapy antibacterial spray
1 1/2 &ndash 1 3/4 oz. distilled or spring water
1/4 oz. vodka (1 1/2 tsp.) or witch hazel
36 – 48 drops of germ-fighting essential oils. Mix and match from the list below to make up to 48 drops.
Makes enough for one 2 oz. glass spray bottle.
Spike Lavender (Lavandula latifolia)
Sweet thyme (Thymus vulgaris linalol)
Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis)
Eucalyptus tea tree
Make sure they are medical grade, true aroma therapy oils
1.Add the vodka to the bottle. Vodka acts as a natural preservative and disinfectant, or use witch hazel.
2.Add one or more essential oil.
4.To use – shake the bottle to incorporate the essential oils and then spray to disinfect the air or surfaces.
Safe travels everyone!