8 tips for a germ-free trip

    6:52 AM, Dec 14, 2012   |    comments
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    LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) -- Whether you're going by boat, plane, train, or automobile, travel bugs are bound to greet you.

    From doctors, here are some cringe-worthy stats on germs and traveling, and tips on how you can take a trip unscathed from Yahoo! Shine.

    1. Stay hydrated - According to the CDC, the air in planes has little humidity which can dry out your sinuses. Stay hydrated through your trip can prevent your nasal passages from getting irritated.

    2. Move seats - Although the majority of modern commercial aircrafts have HEPA filters, studies have shown that the person sitting the front, side of an ill passenger is the most likely to get sick. Ask to move if you are near a sick passenger. If you can't use a saline spray to keep your nasal passages moist.

    3. Skip pillows and blankets - If you love the comforts of home while traveling, bring them from home. Pillows and blankets are meant to be changed after every flight, but there are no government rules regulating this.

    4. Check out public inspection scores - If you are thinking of going on a cruise, be aware disease can spread fast like gastrointestinal ailments like noroviruses. For this, the CDC has created a Vessel Sanitation Program that makes inspection scores available to the public.

    5. Make a cruise ship checklist - A study published in Clinical Infectious Diseases, only 37 percent of 56 cruise ships clean their toilets daily. As a safety precaution, use a paper towel or napkin when handling doorknobs and periodically use hand sanitizer.

    6. Take the right pills - Getting enough vitamins and minerals are important to stay healthy, but loading up on Vitamin C may not be the best idea. "High doses of Vitamin C to prevent or treat the common cold remain controversial," says Dr. Ray Fillmore Garman, MD, MPH. He suggests keeping zinc in lozenge form or syrup to reduce the length of a cold by a day.

    7. Keep hand sanitizer handy - Everyone know washing your hands after you use the restroom is key in staying healthy, and while there's nothing substituting a good hand washing, use hand sanitizer as often as possible.

    8. Avoid these hotel horrors - Your bed may have fresh sheets and your bathroom have new towels, but that doesn't mean everything in the room has been cleaned. Other items that have a high touch rate like TV remotes, telephones, and door handles, can still be contaminated with E. coli and Enterococci. Wipe down items with antibacterial wipes can fix this problem. Also be weary of water glasses. Who knows if the housekeeper used the same gloves to clean those glasses to wash the toilet. To be safe, use glasses wrapped in plastic.

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