Do you want to come to the Christmas market with us? Part 1

Do you want to come to the Christmas market with us? For most of us, this is a harmless, innocuous question. But for people with chronic respiratory conditions, this question is not always easy to answer. We asked four lung patients this question anyway. Here are their answers.


Carina von Stackelberg, 26 years old, psychology student and cystic fibrosis patient

"Whether or not I go to the Christmas market depends on the situation. During the daytime, I think Christmas markets are very nice and I also enjoy going to them. But in the evening, Christmas market rush hour so to speak, it’s often too tiring for me. There are so many people there, it’s packed. It’s difficult for me to get enough air. I also avoid going to Christmas markets if I notice that a lot of people have colds and are sick. In that case I usually refuse the invitation, even if I would enjoy going. The risk of getting sick is too high. Normally I am not that worried about bacteria and viruses, but when a lot of people are sick or the flu is going around, I think twice about it. I also always wonder whether the cups at Christmas markets are really cleaned well and who drank out of them before me. My friends know about my cystic fibrosis and the problems associated with it. Sometimes they adjust to my situation and we go during the day. If it doesn’t work out for them to do this, they go to the Christmas market without me, and I don’t have any problem with this. Rather, I sometimes get sad because it hits home that I have to miss out on something because of this disease."

Carina’s tips:

  • Go to Christmas markets in the afternoon when it’s not so busy. You can still enjoy the special atmosphere because it gets dark early.
  • Bring your own cup to use for the mulled wine, so you can be sure that the cup will be clean and germ-free.
  • Take disinfectant with you and disinfect your hands before eating to minimise the risk of infection.

Carina blogs at and on Instagram (damnbrave) about her life with cystic fibrosis.

Read more about the day-to-day life with cystic fibrosis and therapy options for cystic fibrosis.

Also read:

Note: The statements made in the interview are the individual views of the interviewee. They do not necessarily reflect the PARI view or the general state of science.

An article written by the PARI BLOG editorial team.

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