Travel by air for business
Upcoming SlideShare
Loading in...5
×
 

Travel by air for business

on

  • 698 views

 

Statistics

Views

Total Views
698
Views on SlideShare
698
Embed Views
0

Actions

Likes
0
Downloads
2
Comments
0

0 Embeds 0

No embeds

Accessibility

Categories

Upload Details

Uploaded via as Microsoft Word

Usage Rights

© All Rights Reserved

Report content

Flagged as inappropriate Flag as inappropriate
Flag as inappropriate

Select your reason for flagging this presentation as inappropriate.

Cancel
  • Full Name Full Name Comment goes here.
    Are you sure you want to
    Your message goes here
    Processing…
Post Comment
Edit your comment

Travel by air for business Travel by air for business Document Transcript

  • Safe Air Travel for the Business Professional By Chelse Benham "Airlines should be responsible for informing passengers of the physical impact of flight.” - Diana Fairechild, aviation health and safety author According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), approximately 60 million international passengers travel by air from the United States and over a third of them travel to developing countries, where the risk of contracting infectious diseases is high. The CDC estimates that as much as half of international travelers get sick or injured (hurt) during their trip. However, it isn’t international travel that’s the only culprit at compromising one’s health. According to Prevention magazine, air travel, in general, is a dirty business. The April 2004 edition of Prevention magazine reported a recent American Society for Microbiology study that looked at 7,500 air travelers. The report found that 22 percent of travelers left airport bathrooms without washing their hands. The magazine further reported a study from The University of California, San Francisco that found one in five airline passengers develop cold symptoms within a week of flying. As a solution, the magazine suggests, in its article “Wash, Rinse, Fly,” to take Echinacea and vitamin C a few days before you fly to boost the immune system. “Echinacea with Goldenseal is effective in boosting the immune system, but you have to take it gradually starting a few days before flying,” said Dr. Alexander Edionwe, associate professor of dietetics in the College of Health Sciences and Human Services at The University of Texas-Pan American. “Echinacea helps fight against antigens. I would suggest someone use it as a preventive measure to boost the immune system. Also taking vitamins C, E, A and selenium will help fight disease because they act as antioxidants.” Based on the list of contagious diseases provided by the CDC, bolstering the immune system is a wise precaution. The CDC lists a sundry of airborne viruses that can be contracted in airplane cabins such as the flu, measles, mumps, chicken pox and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS). Added to that list are the bacterial diseases that can be caught such as pneumonia, meningitis and tuberculosis (TB). Furthermore, incubation periods for viral and bacterial infections range from several days to several weeks. Diana Fairechild, author of “Jet Smart” and a former flight attendant, points out that airplane cabins increase the chances of getting sick. She targets the air filtration system as the cause. “It is not effective and the airflow circulates and recycles exhaled air of fellow travelers. In addition, the cabin is very dry,” writes Fairechild. “This dry air has
  • been shown to increase the survival rate of viruses and low relative humidity also reduces the efficiency of the respiratory system cilia to filter out biohazards.” In her book, Fairechild provides many suggestions to help prevent acquiring illnesses during flight. She lists the following: • Wear a handkerchief or surgical mask before boarding. Although the risk of infection increases with the duration of a flight, evidence shows that infections spread while the plane is grounded before all flights – short, long, domestic or international – because there is usually no fresh air at all on board until after takeoff. Saturate your handkerchief or surgical mask with water. This will help block the spread of germs, while also providing humidity for your lungs. • Wipe down your arm rests, head rest and tray table with an alcohol wipe as soon as you take your seat. While on board, often wash your hands with soap and hot water and/or use antibacterial lotion before you touch your eyes, nose and mouth. • If you are seated next to or around someone who is coughing and looks sick move to a new seat. If that can’t be done speak to a flight attendant and discuss the situation. Carry a disposable, surgical mask in your bag in case someone on board is heavily coughing. Politely present the individual with the mask and ask if they might be considerate enough to wear it to prevent spreading their infection. Catching an illness isn’t the only danger encountered during flight. Fairechild warns that in-flight dehydration is one of the most serious hazards long-distance flyers face. Symptoms of in-flight dehydration include thirst, scratchy eyes, bloodshot eyes, dry skin, wrinkled skin and constipation. She suggests the following steps to prevent dehydration: • Drink at least eight ounces of water every hour en route. • Carry your own bottle of drinking water when you fly, to sip on when service is not available. • En route, ask for bottled or canned water when the bar cart comes by. Avoid tap water on airplanes. There are presently no standards for commercial aircraft water tanks, for cleanliness, treatment procedures nor water quality in cities around the world where commercial jets refill. • Avoid alcohol and coffee; they have diuretic properties, i.e., they squeeze water out of the body’s cells.
  • • Spritz your face often; use an empty perfume atomizer and refill it with your own drinking water or buy a water spritzer (used for ironing). This helps mitigate the in-cabin low humidity. • For humidified breathing air, cover your nose with a water-saturated cotton handkerchief. You might feel self-conscious, but your nose and lungs won't dry out so much. Leave it on as much as possible during the flight. It will also help to block the spread of germs. In its June 2004 edition, Prevention magazine offered travel-healthy tips in the “Ask Dr. Weil” column. The following tips were given: 1. Food – Try to avoid airplane meals. They are generally full of chemical preservatives, frozen and defrosted with hundreds of other meals in ovens that are swiped with chemical cleaners. If that's not enough, airline meals are served at times which increase our jetlag. Bring snacks (from home) to tide you over and eat after landing on your local meal time. 2. Clothing – Wear loose clothes when you fly. The low air pressure (8,000 feet inside the jet cabin) makes our bodies swell up and tight clothing can dangerously impede circulation. Wear layers that can be easily removed for more comfort. 3. Airport – Arrive at the airport with time to spare. You'll get a better seat selection and have a leisurely pace when negotiating security. 4. Germs – Keep your nostrils moist. To help block the spread of airborne germs, coat your nostrils with edible oil (example, olive oil) or use a moisturizing nasal spray and wear a handkerchief over your nose and mouth. 5. Water – Cabin air is drier than any desert. Alcohol and coffee dehydrate you, so drink bottled water every hour, but not the water in the drinking fountains on the plane – it's unclean. 6. Sleep – Avoid sleeping on the plane if it arrives at night. To help you get over jetlag, you will need to sleep at night after landing. However, if your flight lands in the morning, try to get as much sleep as you can on board. 7. Oxygen – To get more fresh air on the airplane, ask your flight attendant to convey to the pilot that you'd like "less recycled air and more fresh air, please." If the air still remains stuffy, you can ask your flight attendant to bring you an oxygen bottle. 8. Physical Exercises – Exercise as much as possible on board. Contract/release every muscle in your body while seated, get up and walk around the plane and do some stretches by the doors. This will reduce many
  • physical and mental symptoms of jetlag and the possibility of having deep vein thrombosis (DVT), a condition that occurs when a blood clot lodges in a deep vein, usually in the lower leg or thigh. 9. Keep medications with you - Carry enough of all of your medicines in your carry-on luggage. Ask your doctor whether you should change your dosages if your eating and sleeping times will change at your destination. Bring enough medicine to last your whole trip. Take extra medicine with you in case your return trip is delayed. 10. Medical Alert Notification – If you have diabetes or epilepsy, carry a notification and identification card (such as the "Diabetes Alert Card" from the American Diabetes Association). Have the name and phone number of your doctor with you in case of an emergency. Remember to bring along the names and dosages of all of your medicines. It is always good to be well prepared when traveling. If you have to travel a lot put together a travel bag that’s ready at a moments notice. One solution is to pack a travel kit, ahead of time, with the things you need to make your trip more comfortable. That way you don’t have to rush around collecting the necessary items at the last minute. Some items to consider packing are: • Earplugs (block out engine noise) • Antibacterial hand sanitizer/alcohol wipes • Bottled water • Surgical masks/handkerchief • Olive oil coated swabs in a plastic bag (for the nose), saline nasal spray • Medications: pain relievers, antacids, prescriptions • Doc kit –Toothbrush/toothpaste, comb, make-up (items to help touch-up your appearance) • Inflatable neck pillow • Spritzer bottle with water • Vitamin C and Echinacea • Chewing gum • Healthy snacks: dried fruit, nuts and cereal bars • Reading material Not being prepared and protected while traveling can be hazardous to your health. What is a routine business trip could turn out to be a hospital trip if you don’t use caution. Airplanes are incubators for illnesses. Don’t be put out of commission because of something you caught in-flight. “Facts do not cease to exist because they are ignored.” - Anonymous