What is Jet Lag ?
If you are used to being adventurous, and happen to enjoy traveling to places that are far away, then you must be familiar with jet lag.
Jet lag is the condition you find yourself in when your body’s clock gets disturbed after traveling across many time zones. That is how your body ends up needing sleep during daytime and staying alert and awake at night.
Here are the most common symptoms of jet lag
Thankfully, there are many ways to prevent such symptoms to ruin your holidays. Here are some tips for you to deal with jet lag.
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6 tips to deal with Jet lag
1. Be cool about it
Just like we mentioned on this previous article talking about sleep deprivation and the benefits of adjustable beds, taking things easy is the first step to feeling better about sleep issues.
Anyone can experience jet lag. It is a condition that can easily affect anybody who isn’t prepared for it. The first step to not letting the jet lag symptoms ruin your vacation is to accept your situation as it is. So what if your body desperately needs sleep despite the shining sun outside? You can always get your body clock to function normally after a day or two. Stay cool about it and it will pass smoothly.
2. Be wise when choosing your schedule
If you want to avoid suffering from jet lag at all costs, then you must be smart about the organization of your flight. Try to always aim for flights which will enable you to arrive in daylight. That way, you will be forced to stay awake until nightfall, which will help set your body clock based on the country you will be in. If you know you can’t handle that, try to divide your trip in two or three shorter ones. That will help your body slowly adapt itself to the different time zones without being completely destabilized.
3. Say no to coffee
When flying, the best thing you could do would be drinking water as much as possible in order to stay hydrated. At the same time, try to avoid drinking coffee as much as possible.
Caffeine disrupts sleep by stimulating your nerves as well as by increasing the urge to urinate. It may go further than that and create symptoms of anxiety or restlessness that will worsen your condition during the flights, thus worsening the jet lag.
4. Pay attention to your diet
You may have not expected this tip to appear in this list, when in reality your diet plays such a huge role in how you handle jet lag symptoms. As we have mentioned before, you need to make sure to drink plenty of water, and at the same occasion avoid drinking alcohol, caffeinated drinks. You need to also avoid eating heavy meals, for they can mess with your sleeping patterns and thus make your jet lag symptoms even worse than they already are.
One interesting and extremely helpful thing you can do would be trying to synchronize your meals with the time zone of the country you are flying to. Even if eating breakfast when the sun has already set might feel weird at first, know that it will effectively prepare your body for a radical change in the way it receives aliments.
5. Get your body moving
Whether it is during the flight or on arrival, you need to make sure to not let your body rest. It doesn’t mean that you have to extenuate yourself, but keeping your blood flowing will help you adapt easier to the new time zone.
In the plane, doing some stretching will make your muscles feel less sore after multiple hours of you not moving in your seat. Don’t hesitate to walk until the toilets that are the farthest from you (while making sure you are not disturbing anyone) to get your legs moving.
When you arrive to your destination, rather than sleeping in and napping to catch on all the sleeping hours you missed, force yourself to go out. Visiting your surroundings is a great way for you to tire your body out so that you are sure that you will pass out on your bed as soon as you come back to the hotel or the accommodation at night.
6. Avoid sleeping pills
Even if sleeping pills sound like some magical remedy, they actually may cause you more harm than anything else. Taking a sleeping pill doesn’t help regulating your body’s clock in any way. If anything, sleeping medications will only make you feel a bit dizzy or fuzzy, which is something you do not want to have to deal with during your trip.
The best way to regulate your sleep is to do it naturally. But if you are in a desperate need to get some sleep at night, one pill will not be harmful. Make sure to contact your doctor first though.