I’m Not Sick, But I’m Not Well

by Nancy Bestor

845059_65243846It’s flu season once again, and once again I have failed to get a flu shot. I’m not going to go on record and say that I’m healthy, because that will assure I’ll come down with a cold next week, but I will say I work hard to eat right, exercise and avoid situations that would compromise my health. But what about germs and travel? There’s only so much I can do to keep from getting other travelers’ germs, especially when the person right next to me is sneezing, sniffling and coughing from takeoff to touchdown.

A USA today article recently brought to light the most germy spots on airplanes and in airports, but I’m not sure you want to read it. Ick. Everything from influenza, diarrhea and MRSA have been found on airplane tray tables. Yuck. Every now and then when I’m wearing sandals and have to take off my shoes at the xray screening, I forget socks. Ick. Walking barefoot on the mats and during the scan CAN’T be good for me.

How can we keep from getting sick after flying? Well I for one could start by bringing socks. Some hand sanitizer might be a good idea too. Finally, research shows that the most germinated areas are those that people touch the most (shocking!), so if we can avoid touching with our hands the most commonly touched items, like the latches of overhead bins, and the door handles of bathrooms, we will be better off. Or, if like me, you haven’t figured out a way to open the latch of an overhead bin without using your hands, at least don’t touch your hands to your eyes, ears, mouth or nose until you’ve sanitized them. Achoooo!