The busiest time for airports is during the winter holidays. Germs that cause the common cold and flu are also hard at work thoughout this time. Here are five ways to fend off flu and cold germs while you fly.
1. Use the airport restroom. Airport bathrooms are cleaner than the ones on the planes, so go before you get on board. This will reduce the amount of toilet trips.
2. Moisturize your nose. Use saline nasal spray, Neosporin, or Vaseline to irrigate and moisturize the mucus membranes in and outside of your nose to protect against nosebleeds and dry cabin air. A dry nose makes it easier for germs to enter.
3. Eat yogurt. According to nutrition research, the beneficial bacteria in yogurt have a protective effect on your immune system and may reduce susceptibility to colds by 25 percent.
4. Remove contact lenses before you fly. If you don't like to fly with contact lenses, take them out in the airport bathroom. Touching your eyes is one way cold and flu viruses make their way through the tear ducts to the nasopharynx--the place where nasal passages meet the mouth and the back of the throat.
5. Travel with your own blanket and pillow. Blankets and pillows offered by airlines can harbor germs, especially cold and flu viruses.