Your health in­flight

At Air Ni­ug­ini we care about your com­fort and safety. We have in­cluded the fol­low­ing in­for­ma­tion about your health in-flight that we hope you will find help­ful and use­ful.

Paradise - - Your Health Inflight -

When you are fly­ing you can be seated and be in­ac­tive for long pe­ri­ods of time. The en­vi­ron­ment can be low in hu­mid­ity and pres­surised up to an al­ti­tude of 2240 me­tres above sea level. Un­like other forms of trans­porta­tion, air travel al­lows for rapid move­ment across many time zones, caus­ing a dis­rup­tion to the body’s “bi­o­log­i­cal clock”. Al­though these unique fac­tors do not pose a health or safety threat to most pas­sen­gers, there are guide­lines you can fol­low that will im­prove your com­fort level, dur­ing and after a flight. We hope the fol­low­ing rec­om­men­da­tions will help you have a more pleas­ant flight today and in the future.

Blood Cir­cu­la­tion / Mus­cle Re­lax­ation

When you’re sit­ting up­right in a sta­tion­ary po­si­tion for a long pe­riod of time, sev­eral things can hap­pen.

The cen­tral blood ves­sels in your legs can be com­pressed, mak­ing it more dif­fi­cult for the blood to get back to your heart.

The long in­ac­tiv­ity of your body mus­cles in this po­si­tion can re­sult in mus­cle ten­sion, back aches or a feel­ing of ex­ces­sive fa­tigue dur­ing, or even after, your flight.

A sta­tion­ary po­si­tion in­hibits the nor­mal body mech­a­nism for re­turn­ing fluid to your heart, and grav­ity can cause the fluid to col­lect in your feet. This re­sults in swollen feet after a long flight.

Stud­ies have con­cluded that pro­longed im­mo­bil­ity may be a risk fac­tor in the for­ma­tion of clots in the legs

(DVT - deep vein throm­bo­sis). Par­tic­u­lar med­i­ca­tion and med­i­cal con­di­tions may in­crease the risk of for­ma­tion of clots if as­so­ci­ated with pro­longed im­mo­bil­ity.

Med­i­cal re­search in­di­cates that fac­tors which may give you an in­creased risk of blood clots in the legs in­clude:

For­mer or cur­rent ma­lig­nant dis­ease

Blood dis­or­ders lead­ing to in­creased clot­ting ten­dency Per­sonal or fam­ily history of DVT • Im­mo­bil­i­sa­tion for a day or more

• In­creas­ing age above 40 years

• Preg­nancy

• Re­cent ma­jor surgery or in­jury, es­pe­cially to lower limbs or ab­domen

• Oe­stro­gen hor­mone ther­apy, in­clud­ing oral con­tra­cep­tives De­hy­dra­tion

• Heart fail­ure

• Trauma

• Vari­cose veins

• Obe­sity

• To­bacco smok­ing

Rec­om­men­da­tions

• If you fall into any of these cat­e­gories or you have any con­cern about your health and fly­ing, Air Ni­ug­ini rec­om­mends you seek med­i­cal ad­vice be­fore trav­el­ling.

• Fol­low our in-flight ex­er­cises pro­gramme.

Jet­lag

The main cause of jet­lag is trav­el­ling to dif­fer­ent time zones with­out giv­ing the body a chance to ad­just to new night-day cy­cles. In gen­eral, the more time zones you cross dur­ing your flight, the more your bi­o­log­i­cal clock is dis­turbed.

The com­mon symp­toms are sleep­less­ness, tired­ness, loss of ap­petite or ap­petite at odd hours.

Rec­om­men­da­tions

• Get a good night’s rest be­fore your flight.

• Ar­rive at your desti­na­tion a day or two early, to give your body a chance to be­come more ac­cli­ma­tised to the new time zone.

• Leave your watch on home time if you’re stay­ing at a desti­na­tion less than 48 hours. Also try to eat and sleep ac­cord­ing to your home time.

• Change your watch to the lo­cal time if your stay is longer than 48 hours, and try to eat and sleep in ac­cor­dance with the lo­cal time.

• On longer stays, try to pre­pare in ad­vance, ad­just your meal and rest times to be closer to those of your desti­na­tion.

• Try some light ex­er­cise - go for a brisk walk, or do some read­ing if you can’t sleep after ar­rival at your desti­na­tion. It gen­er­ally takes the body’s bi­o­log­i­cal clock ap­prox­i­mately one day to ad­just per time zone crossed.

• Fly di­rect to min­imise flight time. This al­lows you to re­lax more upon ar­rival.

Cabin Hu­mid­ity / De­hy­dra­tion

Hu­mid­ity lev­els of less than 25 per­cent are com­mon in the cabin. This is due to the ex­tremely low hu­mid­ity lev­els of out­side air sup­plied to the cabin. The low hu­mid­ity can cause dry­ing of the nose, throat, eyes and it can ir­ri­tate con­tact lens wear­ers.

Rec­om­men­da­tions

• Drink wa­ter or juices fre­quently dur­ing the flight

• Drink cof­fee, tea and al­co­hol in mod­er­a­tion. These drinks acts as di­uret­ics, in­creas­ing the body’s de­hy­dra­tion.

• Re­move con­tact lenses and wear glasses if your eyes are ir­ri­tated.

• Use a skin mois­turiser to re­fresh the skin.

Eating and Drinking

Proper eating and drinking will en­hance your com­fort both dur­ing and after your flight.

Rec­om­men­da­tions

• Avoid overeat­ing just prior to and dur­ing the flight. It is dif­fi­cult to digest too much food when the body is in­ac­tive.

• Drink cof­fee, tea and al­co­hol in mod­er­a­tion. These drinks acts as di­uret­ics, in­creas­ing the body’s de­hy­dra­tion.

Cabin Pres­suri­sa­tion

It is nec­es­sary to pres­surise the out­side air drawn into the cabin to a suf­fi­cient den­sity for your com­fort and health. Cab­ins are pres­surised to a max­i­mum cabin al­ti­tude of 2440 me­tres. It is the same air pres­sure as if you were at an el­e­va­tion of 2440 me­tres above sea level. The cabin pres­sure and nor­mal rates of change in cabin pres­sure dur­ing climb and de­scent do not pose a prob­lem for most pas­sen­gers. How­ever, if you suf­fer from up­per res­pi­ra­tory or si­nus in­fec­tions, ob­struc­tive pul­monary dis­eases, anaemias or cer­tain car­dio­vas­cu­lar con­di­tions, you could ex­pe­ri­ence dis­com­fort. Chil­dren and in­fants might ex­pe­ri­ence some dis­com­fort be­cause of pres­sure change dur­ing climb and de­scent.

If you are suf­fer­ing from nasal conges­tion or al­ler­gies, use nasal sprays, de­con­ges­tants and an­ti­his­tamines 30 min­utes prior to de­scent to help open up your ear and si­nus pas­sages. If you have a cold or flu or hay fever your si­nuses could be im­paired. Swollen mem­branes in your nose could block your eu­stachian tubes-the tiny chan­nels be­tween your mid­dle ear cham­ber. This can cause dis­com­fort dur­ing changes in cabin pres­sure, par­tic­u­larly dur­ing de­scent.

Rec­om­men­da­tions

• If you have a pre-ex­ist­ing med­i­cal con­di­tion that war­rants sup­ple­men­tal oxy­gen, you can or­der from us. Please give at least seven days no­tice be­fore trav­el­ling.

• To “clear” your ears try swal­low­ing and/or yawn­ing.

These ac­tions help open your eu­stachian tubes, equal­iz­ing pres­sure be­tween your ear cham­ber and your throat.

• When fly­ing with an in­fant, feed or give your baby a dummy dur­ing de­scent. Suck­ing and swal­low­ing will help in­fants equal­ize the pres­sure in their ears.

Mo­tion Sick­ness

This ail­ment is caused by a con­flict be­tween the body’s sense of vi­sion and its sense of equi­lib­rium. Air tur­bu­lence in­creases its like­li­hood be­cause it can cause move­ment of the fluid in the vestibu­lar ap­pa­ra­tus of the in­ner ear. If you have good visual cues (keep­ing your eyes fixed on non-mov­ing ob­ject), mo­tion sick­ness is less likely to oc­cur.

Rec­om­men­da­tions

• When weather is clear and you can see the ground, sea or hori­zon, you are less sus­cep­ti­ble to mo­tion sick­ness.

• You can buy over the counter med­i­ca­tions but we rec­om­mend that you con­sult your doc­tor about the ap­pro­pri­ate med­i­ca­tions.

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