How to Get Over Jet Lag
Jet lag happens when you travel across time zones. Your body is adjusted to your regular daily routine and to the timings of day and night. When you travel to a faraway place in a different zone, it may be the day, but your body is adjusted to your home time zone and thinks it is the night. So you feel sleepy, tired and not able to sleep and need time to get adjusted to the new time zone, by which time you will probably be back to your time zone. This is jet lag.
The human body has a normal cycle, known as the circadian cycle. It adjusts the body to various situations, including the time of the day. When you travel to a new time zone, the circadian cycle finds it difficult to quickly change to the new time zone. Physically it is night in the new location, but your body thinks it is the day. This jet lag is due to the natural body cycle.
Regular travelers may get adjusted and handle jet lag. But most people face a lot of problems because of jet lag. It can lead to sleep disorder and you feel sleepy during the day and are not able to sleep at night. It can also lead to indigestion, bowel problems and loss of concentration. The symptoms of jet lag can vary from person to person depending on their age, health status, and stress levels.
Jet lag worsens when you travel west to east as you lose time. On an average, it takes a minimum of one full day to recover from the effects of jet lag. Most people may need more time. So how can you get over jet lag? Is there anything you can do to make your body get adjusted to the new time zone as seamlessly as possible? Following are some tips to get over jet lag:
When you travel, especially to a new time zone, try to avoid having a packed schedule. Keep aside the first day to rest and allow your body to get adjusted to the new time zone.
2. Simulate the new time zone
Before you actually reach the new time zone, you can simulate the new time zone to make your body get adjusted. You can change your sleep time and meal times to the new time zone a few days before you leave.
3. Adjust to the new time in-flight
When you are traveling to a new time zone, try to get adjusted to the new time zone in the flight. Change your watch first to reflect the time of your destination. Then try to sleep when it is night at your destination. This allows your body to slowly get adjusted.
4. Try to land during the day
When you reach your destination in the new time zone, try as far as possible to arrive during the daytime. The natural sunlight will assist you in keeping awake. Landing at night and not able to sleep will ruin your entire day.
5. Avoid stimulants
Alcohol, cigarettes, and coffee should be avoided as they can delay your jet lag recovery time. Eat more of natural food to get your body ready for the new time zone.
6. Move your body
Walk around during the flight to get some exercise. When you land, move around, especially in sunlight. Do light exercises to keep your muscles active. This can help you to cope with jet lag.
7. Take a hot bath
Take a hot bath before you sleep in the new time zone, so you can get a good night’s sleep and thus overcome jet lag.
8. Consider medications
If you have serious problems getting adjusted, then you can consult a doctor and take medicines to help you sleep and get adjusted to the new time zone.
Jet lag is a problem for travelers, but there are many ways by which you can get adjusted and overcome its ill effects.