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During flu season, jet setters are justifiably concerned about getting sick while globetrotting long distances on airplanes. And those worries come well backed by research. "There are two ways that infectious disease spreads -- one is by droplets in the air and the other is when we touch a surface that is contaminated," says Larry Weiss, MD, cofounder and chief scientist at CleanWell, a company that makes sanitizers and household cleaning products to kill germs without the use of harsh chemicals.
But breathe easy -- the majority of modern commercial aircrafts have HEPA filters (similar to what hospitals use to keep the air clean) that introduce fresh air into the cabin and capture more than 99 percent of the airborne microbes. Even so, studies have shown that the chance for post-flight disease increases when seated in a "hot zone" (two seats to the front, side, and behind an ill passenger). Speak with a flight attendant about relocating if someone near you is sick and if you can't use a saline spray like Flight Spray Nasal Hydration Spray to keep your nasal passages moist -- it could help your health post-flight.