On a plane you lose eight ounces of water by skin evaporation every hour.
Lack of humidity in the cabin air can lead to dry skin, itchy eyes, and fatigue as well as breathing problems for those who suffer respiratory conditions. When in low-humidity environments you are also faced with a higher risk of catching a cold or other respiratory virus.
There are some simple things you can do to help keep your airborne body hydrated:
- Start increasing your water intake several days before your flight
- Drink plenty of water while in the air; the common suggested amount is eight ounces of water for every hour you are in the air
- Use eye drops to alleviate dry eyes, especially if you wear contact lenses
- Have moisturizer on hand to hydrate from the outside
- Bring saline nose spray to avoid nasal and throat discomfort
- Consider using a small water spritzer to moisten your face and the air in your immediate space
- Avoid alcohol and caffeine as they absorb water out of your body cells causing further dehydrated
- Place a wet cloth over your nose to breath some moist air
- Eat fresh fruit before, during and after your flight ; apples are about 85% water and easy to carry on
- Once you have landed immerse yourself in water, either by taking a bath or going for a swim and get hydration right through your skin
The ideal humidity comfort zone is around 50%, air in an airline cabin can fall to as low as 1% on long flights. By following the above guidelines you can keep your air travel a bit more comfortable and stay healthier.