Fighting germs during the holiday travel season - WMBFNews.com, Myrtle Beach/Florence SC, Weather

Fighting germs during the holiday travel season

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MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) – If you are among the 44 million Americans expected to travel next week for Thanksgiving, chances are you are going to come in contact with someone else's germs.

The three "germiest" places on a plane are the toilets, food trays and overhead baggage bins.  But the toilets are the one thing Melissa Bushey avoids at all cost when traveling.

"If it's not an automatic toilet and it's the old style with the metal handle," Bushey said, "I will flush it with my shoe instead of actually push the handle, which I know is gross but that's why I don't touch the handle."

Bushey added it's nearly impossible to avoid coming in contact with someone who might be sick when traveling in an airport.

"You're in the terminal and there's no open windows, people are coughing sitting next to you waiting to get on the plane," Bushey said.  "It's not the ideal environment."

Dr. Ron Reynolds with Beach Urgent Care said more and more people are getting sick in Myrtle Beach which is not a good sign for the holidays.

"We're seeing a lot of sinus related issues, a lot of bronchitis and pneumonia plus we're starting to get our first few cases of the flu," Reynolds said.

When you are traveling to different destinations you are more likely to pick up a bug your body is not immune to, Reynolds said.

"When you're traveling more, there's more exposure," Reynolds said.  "You essentially are able to bring new things into the environment which so far this the year we might not have had that exposure yet."

If you do not have any plans to travel this holiday season, you might not be out of the woods yet when it comes to getting sick.  Someone you know may travel somewhere and bring something back that could make you sick, Reynolds said.

"Most of the other times of the year we have people coming to Myrtle Beach," Reynolds said.  "This is one of those opportunities where the people that live in Myrtle Beach tend to go somewhere else and bring home the bugs from there and back here."

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