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How flying seriously messes with your mind 坐飞机如何严重扰乱你的心智 With the tiny screen bouncing around in front of us, tinny sound quality and frequent interruptions, watching a movie during a flight is hardly an immersive experience. 面前的小银屏在不断的跳动着,音质尖细,又时常被打断,你很难在飞行过程中沉浸于影片之中。 Yet, frequent fliers may have found themselves – or at least witnessed others – welling up at the most innocuous of films while on a long airline journey. Even lighthearted comedies such as Bee Movie, Bridesmaids and The Simpsons can trigger the water works in passengers who would normally remain dry-eyed if watching these on the ground. 可是,经常飞行的人却可能发现,在长途旅行中会对剧情极其普通的影片动情落泪,或者至少看见别人这样过。甚至就连《蜜蜂总动员》(Bee Movie)、《最爆伴娘团》(Bridesmaids)和《辛普森一家》(The Simpsons)这样轻松的喜剧片也能激发乘客的泪腺,而在陆地上观看,人们却很少流泪。 Physicist and television presenter Brian Cox and musician Ed Sheeran have both admitted they can get a bit over-emotional when watching movies on aircraft. A new survey by Gatwick Airport in London found 15% of men and 6% of women said they were more likely to cry when watching a film on a flight than they would if seeing it at home. 心理学家、电视节目主持人 布莱恩·考克斯(Brian Cox )和音乐人艾德·希兰(Ed Sheeran)两人都承认,在飞机上看电影时他们会更加激动一些。伦敦盖特威克机场(Gatwick Airport)的一项最新调查发现,15%的男士和6%的女士在飞机上看电影比在家看更容易落泪。 One major airline has gone as far as issuing “emotional health warnings” before inflight entertainment that might upset its customers. 一条重要航线甚至已经开始在娱乐节目可能让旅客躁动不安前发布"情绪健康警告"。 There are many theories about why flying might leave passengers more vulnerable to crying – sadness at leaving loved ones, excitement about the trip ahead, homesickness. But there is also some evidence that flying itself may also be responsible. 关于飞行为什么可能让旅客更脆弱易哭,有很多解释理论,如:离别亲人的伤感、对即将开始的旅行兴奋激动、思乡。但是,也有证据表明,飞行本身也可能是造成问题的原因。 An emerging body of research is suggesting that soaring 35,000ft (10km) above the ground inside a sealed metal tube can do strange things to our minds, altering our mood, changing how our senses work and even making us itch more. 有研究表明,当在一个密闭的金属舱中飞行至35,000英尺(10公里)高空,会对我们的心智产生奇怪的影响,改变我们的情绪和感觉器官的工作方式,甚至会让我们感觉更痒痒。 “There hasn’t been much research done on this in the past as for healthy people these do not pose much of a problem,” says Jochen Hinkelbein, president of the German Society of Aerospace Medicine and assistant medical director for emergency medicine at the University of Cologne. “But as air travel has become cheaper and more popular, older and less fit people are travelling by air. This is leading to more interest in the field.” "过去,人们几乎没有研究过这个问题,因为,对健康人来说,这并不是个什么大问题,"德国航空航天医学会(German Society of Aerospace Medicine)主席乔恩·恒科贝恩(Jochen Hinkelbein)说,他还是科隆大学急诊医学的助理医学主任。"但是,随着航空旅行变得越来越便宜、越大众化,老年人和身体不是很健康的人群也开始乘坐飞机旅行,人们开始更多地关注这些问题。" Hinkelbein is one of a handful of researchers who are now examining how the conditions we experience on flights can affect the human body and mind. 乔恩·恒科贝恩是为数不多的从事飞行环境对人身体与精神影响的研究者之一。 There can be no doubt that aircraft cabins are peculiar places for humans to be. They are a weird environment where the air pressure is similar to that atop an 8,000ft-high (2.4km) mountain. The humidity is lower than in some of the world's driest deserts while the air pumped into the cabin is cooled as low as 10°C (50F) to whisk away the excess heat generated by all the bodies and electronics onboard. 毫无疑问,飞机机舱对人类来说是一个特殊的地方,这里的环境很奇特,气压与在8000英尺(2400米高)的山顶相似,空气温度比世界上最干燥的沙漠还要低,而注入机舱的空气只有10°C (50F),以降低机上人体和电子产品所产生的多余热量。 The reduced air pressure on airline flights can reduce the amount of oxygen in passengers’ blood between 6 and 25%, a drop that in hospital would lead many doctors to administer supplementary oxygen. For healthy passengers, this shouldn’t pose many issues, although in the elderly and people with breathing difficulties, the impact can be higher. 飞机气压的降低会导致旅客血液中的含氧量降低6-25%,这种降低幅度如果是在医院,医生就会采取措施,补充氧气了。对身体健康的旅客来说,这不会导致任何问题,不过,对老年人和呼吸有困难的人,影响可能就会大一些。 There are some studies, however, that show even relatively mild levels of hypoxia (deficiency in oxygen) can alter our ability to think clearly. At oxygen levels equivalent to altitudes above 12,000ft (3.6km), healthy adults can start to show measurable changes in their memory, their ability to perform calculations and make decisions. This is why the aviation regulations insist that pilots must wear supplementary oxygen masks if the cabin air pressure is greater than that found at 12,500ft. 不过,也有研究显示,即便是相对温和的缺氧(氧气不足),也可能让人们无法保持思维清晰。当氧气水平处于海拔12,000英尺(3600米)高度的水平,健康成年人的记忆、计算和决策就可能开始发生变化。这就是为什么航空条例规定当机舱气压高于海拔12,500英尺处的气压,飞行员必须穿戴氧气面罩。 Strangely, the air pressure at altitudes of over 7,000ft (2.1km) has been found to actually increase reaction times – bad news for those who like to play computer games during their flight. 奇怪的是,人们发现海拔7000英尺(2100米)处的气压会延长人们的反应时间,这对那些喜欢在飞行过程中玩电脑游戏的人来说是个坏消息。 But there is some research that shows there can also be small decreases in cognitive performance and reasoning at oxygen levels found at 8,000ft (2.4km) – the same as those found in airline cabins. For most of us, this is unlikely to cloud our thinking much though. 有研究表明,当氧气水平在海拔8000英尺(2400米)时,人们的认知和推理能力会有些许下降,这和机舱里的情形一样。不过,对大多数人来说,这不会对思维造成太大的影响。 “A healthy person like a pilot or passenger should not have cognitive problems at this altitude,” says Hinkelbein. “When you have unfit people, or someone with the flu or pre-existing problems, then hypoxia can decrease oxygen saturation further so cognitive deficits become noticeable.” "身体健康的人,如飞行员或健康乘客,不会在这个高度产生认知障碍,"乔恩说,"不过,对于身体不适者,或那些得了流感或患有疾病的人,氧气缺乏会进一步降低氧饱和度,产生明显的认知困难。" But Hinkelbein says the mild hypoxia we experience during flights can have other, more easily recognised effects on our brains – it makes us tired. Studies in hypobaric chambers and on non-acclimatised military personnel arriving in mountainous regions have shown short-term exposure to altitudes of at least 10,000ft (3km) can increase fatigue, but the effects could start at lower altitudes in some people. 然而,乔恩说,飞行过程中经历的轻度缺氧可能会对我们的大脑产生其它更易察觉的影响,会让人们犯困。通过对气压偏低的房间和尚未适应的军事人员在到达山区时的反应进行研究,发现在海拔10,000英尺(3000米)高处短暂待上一会儿就会增加人的疲劳感。而有些人,可能在低一点的海拔高度就开始产生这种反应。 “Whenever I am sitting in a plane after take-off, I become tired and find it easy to fall asleep,” explains Hinkelbein. “This is not the lack of oxygen causing me to lose conciousness, but the hypoxia is a contributing factor.” "每当我坐上飞机,飞机起飞后,我就开始犯困,想睡觉,"乔恩说,"这并不是缺氧导致我迷糊,不过,缺氧也确实是一个影响因素。" Should you manage to keep your eyes open for long enough to see the crew dim the cabin, however, then you may experience another effect of the lower air pressure. Human night vision can deteriorate by 5-10% at altitudes of just 5,000ft (1.5km). This is because the photoreceptor cells in the retina needed to see in the dark are extremely oxygen-hungry and can struggle to get all they need at a high altitude, causing them to work less effectively. 可是,如果你努力长时间保持眼睛睁着,直至看见空乘人员调暗机舱,你就可能体会到低气压产生的另一种影响。人的夜视能力在海拔5000英尺(1500米)时就会降低5-10%。这是因为,人们在黑暗处看物体动用的视网膜感光细胞非常嗜氧,会在高海拔情况下竭力攫取所需氧气,进而导致工作效率下降。 Flying also plays havoc with our other senses too. The combination of low air pressure and humidity can reduce the sensitivity of our taste buds to salt and sweet by up to 30%. A study commissioned by airline Lufthansa also showed that the savoury flavours in tomato juice taste better during a flight. 飞行还会造成其它感觉器官紊乱,低气压加上低湿度,会降低味蕾对咸与甜的敏感度达30%。德国汉莎航空公司做的一项研究显示,飞行过程中,会感觉番茄汁更加开味可口。 The dry air can also rob us of much of our sense of smell, leaving food tasting bland. It is why many airlines add extra seasoning to the food they serve to make it palatable during a flight. It is perhaps fortunate that our sense of smell is diminished during flights, however, as the change in air pressure can also lead to passengers breaking wind more often. 干燥的空气也会剥夺人的很多嗅觉功能,人们会感觉食物清单无味。这就是为什么很多航空公司向他们提供的食物中额外添加调味品,让其在飞行途中感觉更加美味可口。不过,飞行过程中嗅觉功能减弱也许对人是件幸事,因为气压的变化也可能会导致旅客多放屁。 And if the prospect of breathing in the bodily gases of your fellow passengers doesn’t make you feel awkward enough, it seems reductions in air pressure can also make passengers feel less comfortable. A study in 2007 showed that after about three hours at the altitudes found in airline cabins, people start to complain about feeling uncomfortable. 如果吸入旅行同伴的体味并不会让你感觉特别不舒服,那么气压的降低则可能会让你感觉有那么点儿不舒服。2007年的一项研究显示,当在空中飞行约3个小时后,人们就开始抱怨不舒服。 Combine this with the low humidity and it is little wonder we find it hard to sit still for long periods on flights. A study by Austrian researchers has shown that a long-distance flight can dry out our skin by up to 37%, and may lead to increased itchiness. 如果再结合起低湿度,飞行过程中难以长时间安静地坐着就丝毫不值得奇怪了。奥地利研究者的一项调查发现,长距离飞行可能会让皮肤干燥37%,甚至可能会让人感觉越来越痒痒。 Low levels of air pressure and humidity can also amplify the effects of alcohol and the hangover it produces the next day. 低气压和低湿度还可能加强酒精的作用,让第二天的宿醉更严重。 For those who are already nervous fliers, there is perhaps some more bad news. 对那些飞行焦虑的人来说,可能还有更糟糕的消息。 “Anxiety levels can increase with hypoxia,” explains Valerie Martindale, president of the Aerospace Medical Association at King’s College London. Anxiety is not the only aspect of mood that can be affected by flying. A number of studies has shown spending time at altitude can increase negative emotions like tension, make people less friendly, decrease their energy levels and affect their ability to deal with stress. "焦虑程度会随着氧气的缺乏而加强,"伦敦国王学院航空航天医学学会主席瓦莱丽·马丁代尔(Valerie Martindale)解释说。焦虑不是唯一一种会受到飞行影响的情绪。研究发现,待在高空会加强类似紧张的负面情绪,会让人们变得不那么友善,降低能量水平,并影响他们应对压力的能力。 "We have shown that some aspects of mood can be altered by exposure to cabin pressures equivalent to altitudes of 6,000-8000ft," says Stephen Legg, professor of ergonomics at Massey Univeristy in New Zealand, who is studying the impact of mild hypoxia on people. This may go some way towards explaining why passengers often find themselves crying at films more mid-flight, but most effects in scientific studies seem to only occur at altitudes above those that commercial airline cabins are set to. Recently Legg also showed the mild dehydration that might be expected on a flight can also influence mood. "我们已经证实,待在气压水平等于海拔高度6000-8000英尺的房间里,有些情绪就会发生变化,"新西兰梅西大学(Massey Univeristy in New Zealand)人体工程学教授史蒂芬·莱格(Stephen Legg)说。他正在研究轻度缺氧对人体的影响。这也许在一定程度上可以解释为什么旅客们常常发现自己更容易在飞行的中途对着影片落泪。不过,科学研究发现,大多数不良反应似乎只发生在比商务航空飞行设定的高度更高的海拔高度。 "We know very little about the effect of exposure to multiple mild stressors on complex cognition and mood," he adds. "But we do know that there is a general ‘fatigue’ associated with long distance air travel, so I guess it is probably the combined effects of these concurrent multiple mild exposures that give rise to ‘flight fatigue’. "身处多重温和压力环境下,人们的认知和情绪会受到什么样的影响,人们对此知之甚少,"他补充道,"不过,我们确实知道,长距离空中旅行,人们普遍会感觉'疲劳',因此,我想,也许正是这些同时发生的多种温和压力的综合作用,导致了'飞行疲劳'。" Then there is also research showing altitude can also make people feel happier. 不过,也有研究发现,高空会让人感觉更愉快。 But Stephen Groening, a professor of cinema and media at the University of Washington, believes this happiness may also manifest itself as tears. The boredom on a flight and relief given by an inflight movie, combined with the privacy of the small screen and headphones used to watch one, could lead to tears of joy, not sadness, he says. 华盛顿大学(University of Washington)电影与传媒教授史蒂芬·格罗宁(Stephen Groening)认为,这种幸福也可能表现为眼泪。飞行途中的无聊和电影带来的抚慰,加上用耳机观看小屏幕所拥有的私密感,可能会让人流下幸福的眼泪,而不是伤感的眼泪。 “The configuration of inflight entertainment apparatus produce an affect of intimacy that might lead to heightened emotional responses,” says Groening. “Crying on airplanes actually consists of tears of relief, not tears of sadness.” "机舱内娱乐设备配置营造的私密氛围可能会提高情绪反应水平,"格罗宁说,"在飞机上流的眼泪是欣慰的泪,而不是悲伤的泪。" But Hinkelbein has uncovered another strange change in the human body that could also be messing the way our bodies normally work. A new study he conducted with colleagues at the University of Cologne, but yet to be published, has shown even 30 minutes in similar conditions to those experienced on a commercial airliner can alter the balance of molecules associated with the immune system in the blood of volunteers. It suggests the lower air pressure may cause a change in the way our immune systems work. 乔恩还发现了人体发生的另外一种奇怪变化,也可能会扰乱人体正常工作。他和科隆大学(University of Cologne)同事一起做的一项最新研究(尚未发表)发现,虽然只在与商务客机相似的环境下驻留30分钟,也可以改变志愿者血液中与免疫系统相关的分子平衡。这表明,低气压可能会改变我们的免疫系统。 “People used to think they got a cold or flu when travelling due to changes in the climate,” says Hinkelbein. “But it could be because their immune response changes while on a flight. It is something we need to research in more detail.” "人们过去认为,由于气候的变化,他们在旅行时患上了感冒或流感," 乔恩·恒科贝恩说,"但是,这可能是因为他们在飞行途中,免疫反应发生了变化。对此,我们需要做更详细的研究。" If flights do alter our immune systems it could not only leave us more vulnerable to picking up infections, but it could alter our mood too. Increases in inflammation triggered by the immune system are thought to be linked to depression. 如果飞行确实改变我们的免疫系统,它不仅会让我们更容易感染疾病,也会改变我们的情绪。免疫系统引发的炎症增加被认为与抑郁有关。 “A one off inflammatory challenge from a vaccine can produce a mood dip that resolves in about 48 hours,” says Ed Bullmore, head of psychiatry at the University of Cambridge and who studies how the immune system influences mood disorders. “It would be interesting if a 12-hour flight to the other side of the world caused something similar.” "疫苗引发的炎症导致的情绪低落会在大约48小时内消失。"剑桥大学精神病学主任艾德·布尔莫(Ed Bullmore)说,他在研究免疫系统如何影响情绪紊乱。 "如果飞行12个小时到达地球的另一面会产生相似的问题,那真是很有意思。" 来自:VOA英语网 文章地址: http://www.tingvoa.com/html/20171011/501290.html