Some of you will be looking forward to the incredible experience of a plane journey to your holiday destinations. Especially, after a few hours, arriving and breathing in the clean air; experiencing a completely different climate and environment. For me, that is always the start of the holiday – as soon as I get off the plane and smell the different smells and feel the different temperatures.
Of course, before this, we must endure that short time in a cramped seat! So what is the best way of coping with this? Apart from enjoying the wonderful views of the incredible clouds below us through the window? What else can we do to ensure we are fighting fit when we get off the plane?
If possible, an aisle seat is always best as it allows you to get up as often as you want without disturbing anyone. Try to get up at least once an hour minimum, and stroll down the aisle, or even just standing up and sitting down again will keep things ticking over nicely. To make your seat as comfortable as possible, try to get a blanket or roll up your jacket and place it in the nook of your lower spine, to support the natural curve of your lumbar spine. Perhaps invest a few pounds in a neck support? I find the memory-foam ones are really good for plane journeys, and if you do doze off you’re not going to wake up with a stiff neck!
If you can, try to keep the alcohol to a minimum during the flight, save it for when you get to the resort! Stick to lots of water – it will also make you stand up more often as you’ll need to head to the bathroom! Hydration is vital, as the pressurized cabin is going to dehydrate you. One other thing the difference in pressure is going to do is increase the risk of blood clot formation for those who are prone to this – at least wriggle or move your feet or contract and release all your muscles in your body. Move about as much as you can in your seat. But remind yourself that in a very short time, you will be getting off the plane, so it is all worth it!
Obviously it’s a different story when the holiday is over and you are heading back! So wherever you are going, have a wonderful, safe and healthy time – and remember if there is anything we can do to make your holiday more comfortable for you, we’re here to help.
Wishing you good health always,
Dr Surinder Sandhu