Every freakin' time I fly, I get sick-sheesh

Other than not flying, what to do?

It starts, and I can almost time it exactly, with a sudden tickle in my nose and then a sneezing fit-like 10 or 12 sneezes. Poor seatmates. Couple days later, horrible respiratory crap-phlegm, drippy eyes and nose–just a cold I think. After a flight in Jan. I ended up with this mess for a couple of months and then pneumonia!!

Mask? Mega-vitamin C? I have to fly again in Oct. and already dreading it!

Hand sanitizer (which you’ll have to buy at the airport as security will take yours) and staying hydrated are a good start. Being rested before travelling will help somewhat too.

Vitamin C will do bupkus. I’m told taking zinc supplements in advance helps stave off colds but that is purely anecdotal. And I personally have found Echinacea to be useless.

Aerosol saline, you can take it on the plane as it’s medicinal. Use it often, it will help your sinus flush out whatever you’re breathing in that’s making you sick. Take your own tissues, too.

Hand sanitizer too, and not just on the plane, airports are just as bad!

I find liberally using both is a pretty good prophylactic. I have bad sinus and often get sick from being on the plane too.

Good Luck!

This will keep the mucus membranes moist; airplane air is very drying and when your nasal membranes dry out they’re much less effective at defending against infection. In my case, however, I find that spraying stuff up my nose can cause infections as often as preventing them, hence the suggestion to stay hydrated even if you don’t want to spray stuff up your nose - it will help fighting against the drying effect.

Obviously many people take zinc with no side effects, but it causes problems for some people, like me. It gives me hot flashes: flushing, sweating, difficulty breathing. This only lasts a couple of minutes, but it’s distressing.

So be cautious with zinc.

So you’re saying that you come down with a cold while you’re flying, not a few day afterwards? Not much you can do about that, except try to avoid sick folks just before you’re about to go on vacation. It sucks to arrive in say, Hawaii, and then get sick and have to curtail your activities.

I have a tendency to come down with a cold a few days after flying. Of course the plane is a flying petri dish of cold virus, and with different cold variants than the ones you’re already immune to. I bring along sanitizing wipes and go over every hard surface I may touch - the tray, the window shade slide, the armrests, everything. I use saline nasal spray to keep my sinus passages moist and healthy. I still sometimes come down with something, though.

No, what I get is the weird nose tickle/sneezing thing on the plane. It’s like a gnat flying into my nose-that sudden and quick.

I flew Tuesday, woke up today, fully involved. I had a slight sore throat yesterday.

So the TSA will let me carry like OCEAN on, or a generic of same? I always carry full bottle of water and usually order a full can of OJ.

As long as it’s 3.4 ounces or less. Mine’s in the liquids ziplock bag in my my carry-on, and after the TSA screening but before I board the plane, I rummage it out and put it in a handy pocket, along with the sanitizing wipes and a chapstick.

OP: How often do you otherwise go out in crowds? Do you frequent crowded theaters, ballparks, public transportation like buses or subways, etc.? Do you often visit child day care centers or have little kids of your own?

My point being that if you rarely encounter crowds except when flying then your problem is most likely crowds, not airplanes. So even if you took a train you’d likely have the same problems.

Practice good hand hygiene, keep your filthy hands off your face, and hydration are the best defenses. Plus spend enough time in crowds at home that you develop some immunity to whatever the herd has this week. Most people totally suck at keeping their hands off their face; you may well rub your eyes or touch your nose or lips 20 times an hour and be utterly unaware of it. But each of those touches is a virtual injection of environmental bacteria into the weaker parts of your natural defenses. As your doc might say: Don’t do that.

I’m out in this morass of disease every week. I only get sick after I’ve been away from it for a month or more then return. My coworkers tell me the same applies to many of them.

I used to get a sore throat after every flight so I changed my routine. I do not go to the bathroom on a flight, I do not touch anything unnecessary while on the plane, and I keep my hands away from my face (I have tissues ready to go and I blow and wipe often.) However, the biggest change was taking a coldeeze (Zinc gluconarate) during decent. I have never been sick since I started doing that- it messes up my tastebuds for a day or two, but totally worth it!

I know it is anecdotal, but I live by them while flying now.

I’d seek advice from an ENT doctor.

This seems to be the decade of who is the proudest of their ability to have the weakest immune system.

If this keeps up, the human population problem will be fixed by the die off of the first world populations.

Of course when I was a toddler I would sit in the garden with a spoon eating dirt & maybe a worm or two. I don’t remember…

Mama did not freak out and now I note that some 70+ years later none of my 6 other siblings nor my parents ever got sick with something other than what they went to the hospital for nor when just visiting before the hand sanitation craze became a thing.

Another vote for not touching your face. Not to put too fine a point on it: don’t pick your nose, and don’t rub your eyes. If you catch yourself doing either, stop. If you are going to get anal about one thing, make it this.

I fly once a year, and last year I came down with a respiratory infection the day after I returned. It turned into bronchitis which lasted for weeks.

This year, I equipped myself with some ear loop face masks, hand sanitizer, and a small spray bottle filled with alcohol.

When I got on the plane, I sprayed the handle on the overhead bin, the seatbelt buckle, the tray table, the overhead air nozzle and light switch, the safety card, and when I went to the bathroom, I handled everything with tissue. I wore the mask for most of the trip. I hit my hands with the sanitizer as well. I was the only one with a mask, but I didn’t care. I did not get sick.

I broke a tooth and lost a filling, prying with a toothpick, on a flight from Guam to Manila.

The only times I got diarrhea in the past 20 years were both on recent trans-oceanic flights.

It might have something to do with always taking those cheap overnight flights, and getting no sleep in addition to jetlag.