Why is my child falling sick when we are travelling?
Reader asks, "Dear Dr Dana, My dear daughter always falls sick when we are on overseas holiday. Even though it might just be Malaysia. She will get fever and running nose. Why is this so?"
Any overseas trip that is longer than a usual local trip can be a stressful event for a person. When this happens, a hormone in the body called cortisol is secreted for the body to adapt to the new environment.
Cortisol is also responsible for reducing the immunity of the body. When this happens, the body starts to develop minor symptoms of reduced immunity. In addition, the journey of being in an enclosed space such as the cabin of the plane or the interior of a vehicle also promotes the transmission of viral infection among the passengers. This will hence cause a person to fall sick easily during long-distance travelling.
Answered by Dr Dana Elliott
Dr Dana Elliott Srither, MBBS (Singapore), Grad Dip Family Medicine, is a certified Family Physician who believes in the principles of “Get Well” and “Stay Well”.