It's basically a fact that using the personal aircon on airplanes spreads germs and makes you sick, right?
Er, wrong actually, according to an expert on the spread of infectious diseases linked to air travel, anyway.
Dr. Mark Gendreau, medical director and vice chair of emergency medicine at Lahey Medical Center-Peabody spoke to Travel + Leisure about the commonly head opinion that airconditioning on planes makes people sick.
He explained that, actually, the air coming out of your personal little nozzle above your head is probably only linked to the five rows around you, and you're better off using the aircon to shift any bad germs, rather than not using it to avoid them.
"The flow pattern of air on an aircraft doesn't necessarily work front to back, or back to front. It's actually compartmentalized into various sections on the aircraft. As a rule of thumb, the air that you're typically breathing and exposed to is usually anywhere from two to five rows surrounding your seat. For airborne viruses, it is incredibly important to ventilate, since ventilation becomes your main means of control besides isolating the affected person."
So, the overhead nozzles send air to a certain number of rows, and then this air exits the plane through a grill located beneath the windows.
Apparently, this air then mixes with the outside air before going through a cleaning system and re-entering the plane. This process happens roughly once every two to four minutes.
Interesting stuff, huh?
This article originally appeared on Cosmopolitan.com/uk. Minor edits have been made by the Cosmo.ph editors.