If you want to be a traveller, you will want to travel far and wide. There are some wonderful things that you can discover in almost your own back garden, but equally, there are some things and places that you might want to explore that are on the other side of the world. In this case, you will need to book a long haul flight. Knowing how to stay healthy on a flight that lasts for many hours is essential; the last thing you want to do is to arrive in your destination, perhaps on a once in a lifetime trip, to find that you are sick and can’t leave your hotel room or, worse, that you have to go to hospital. In order to have a great time away and be healthy on (and after) a long haul flight, here are some important tips to follow.
The most dangerous issues that can occur due to a long haul flight are blood clots and deep vein thrombosis. The blood flow is restricted and the blood, rather than circulating properly throughout your body, sit in one place. This is highly dangerous and means that your veins can be blocked. Plus, if a clot were to break free and travel towards your heart, you could suffer a heart attack. Therefore, it is crucial to prevent this from happening as far as possible.
The easiest way to do this is to ensure that you move around when you can. Blood clots and deep vein thrombosis occur when you have been sitting in one position for a long time without moving. Taking a walk up and down the plane every hour or so is vital to keep you healthy. Plus, it is something interesting to do on a long flight. You can talk to the crew, and to other passengers, and discover more about the place you’re heading to, for example.
Another option that you can add to the fact that you need to keep moving around is to wear running socks. These socks, also known as compression socks, keep your circulation working well, and therefore, combined with regular movement, they can help to prevent blood clots from forming.
Although the plane will have been cleaned before you board, that doesn’t mean that there aren’t still plenty of germs hanging around! After all, turnaround times between flights are very short, and it would be easy to miss out of a deep clean when a quick clean will help the airline stick to its scheduled slot. So, the plane might look sparkling clean, but when you really start investigating, it might still be a little grubby. Plus, there are many germs that can lurk on the seats and tray tables, as well as the seatbelts that might not be cleaned away. Always take alcohol wipes with you when you travel; they are perfect for a quick clean up no matter where you are, especially if there is no water around, and when it comes to ensuring that your surroundings are clean on the plane, they are the ideal tool to use.
Boost Your Immunity
Knowing that being on a long-haul flight can be a problem for your health, as soon as you book one, or even when you are merely thinking of booking one, you should work on boosting your immune system to cope with it. Firstly, you should check with your doctor about any vaccinations you might need. You could be required to have some before you can enter whichever country you have chosen to go to, but even if you don’t, there might be something you can take that will help you stay healthy on the plane. Just being up to date with all your immunisations will help you hugely and will increase your chances of staying well. Remember that it will take time for these vaccines to help you build immunity, so there is probably a minimum time required between having them and flying for them to work at their best, so check this out with your doctor before you book a flight, just to be safe.
Vaccinations are a great start, but there are other things you can do if you want to make sure your immune system is going to work at its best when you are on a plane. Firstly, make sure you eat a balanced diet full of fruit and vegetables, and plenty of vitamin C. If you can’t get this kind of diet, or want to ensure that you are getting all the vitamins you need, you can take supplements. Exercise is also important, and so is getting enough sleep. Add all of these things up, and your immune system will be able to fight off any infections that might come its way on a plane.
Becoming dehydrated on a long haul flight is much easier to do than you might think. It’s hard to keep track of time, and you might forget when the last time you had some water was, for example. Plus the air that is recirculating can quickly dry out your skin and mouth, making you feel worse. If you are dehydrated, you won’t be able to sleep properly, and your immune system will be compromised. Not only that but when you land and are having to deal with jet lag, the symptoms can be worsened if you haven’t had enough to drink. Make sure you always have a bottle of water nearby that you can sip, and try to stay away from alcohol and sugary soft drinks because they can make dehydration worse. Water is your best option for staying healthy.
Sleeping on a long haul flight isn’t always going to be the most comfortable thing to do, but if you want to stay healthy, then it is vital. Sleep allows your body to heal itself and repair so that you can be as healthy as possible when you wake up. If you know that sleeping on the plane is going to be a difficult thing to achieve, then it is a good idea to sleep for a solid eight hours before you board. Try to choose a flight time that will allow for this, so that your sleep cycle isn’t too disrupted.