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Why Do My Allergies Get Worse When I Travel?

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Why do my allergies get worse when traveling or flying on a plane?

There are many reasons why allergies can become worse when traveling. In general, changes in climate can make them worse. For example, a dry climate and low humidity in an airplane or new location.

Traveling to areas with higher counts of pollen, mold spores, dust mites, and animal allergens can impact your allergies. These allergens may also be present on a flight. This is from exposure to other people’s clothing, shoes, hair, and luggage. Accommodations while traveling (e.g., hotels) can also expose people to allergens and irritants. This includes passive tobacco smoke and pollutants.

Additionally, exposure to illnesses from other travelers can make allergies worse. Changes in cabin pressure can worsen nasal congestion. An increase in stress can also affect symptoms.

Allergy, Symptoms
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John M. James, MD, is a board-certified allergist. He is also President of Food Allergy Consulting and Education Services, LLC. He has worked as a medical specialist in the field of allergy, asthma, and immunology for over 30 years. Dr. James received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Arkansas and his Doctor of Medicine degree from the University of Tennessee. He is board certified by the American Board of Allergy and Immunology.

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