Jet Lag refers to feelings of fatigue and tiredness caused by travelling. In flights of longer durations, people tend to experience more fatigue as compared to smaller durational flights. This may also be caused by the change in time zones due to travelling across countries. Another name for jet lag is ‘time zone change syndrome.
This condition is occasional and subsides over time. The symptoms of jetlag may differ from person to person. And it is totally possible for someone to experience no jet lag at all.
Travelling across different time zones can also affect sleep schedule. Our body works on a 24-hour circadian rhythm that tends to get disrupted during travelling. Lack of sleep during travelling and adjusting to a different time zone can contribute to jetlag.
However, there is no definite cure for it, but the consequential effects can be minimized by careful planning and strategizing your sleep timings.
Symptoms of jetlag can include
- Difficulty sleeping i.e. insomnia
- Extended periods of sleep
- General irritability
- Muscle soreness
- Difficulty concentrating
- Changes in appetite
- Irregular bowel movements or indigestion
How Can You Manage It?
Managing and reducing the consequences of jet lag can be tricky but possible. With the listed options you can choose what works best for you and try to make the most out of your trip without jet-lagging.
If you are moving across completely different time zones, try to gradually adjust your sleeping and eating schedules accordingly. This may help you fit early and better.
Keeping yourself hydrated can help minimize the symptoms of jetlag. Always carry a reusable bottle for that matter.
Avoid Alcohol and Caffeine:
Caffeine and alcohol can mess up your sleep schedules. As you reach near to the time of takeoff, limit the use of both these substances to avoid severe jet lag symptoms.
Choose Your Flight Wisely:
Flight schedules are available online months ahead. While you are planning to book, choose one that is during the day where the estimated time of arrival is closer to the evening or night. This can help you adjust according to local timings.
Get Some Sunlight:
If let’s say, you arrive in the morning, go out in the sun for your body to get used to the local timings. By doing so, you are also allowing your body to get tired by active physical activity.
Stretching, taking walks or gentle exercising can be a bonus.
if you are a frequent traveler and cannot deal with jet lag symptoms due to immediate commitments; talk to a doctor for melatonin supplements for regulating sleep-wake cycles.
Give It Time:
It takes a few days for the body to get used to changes related to time, weather and other external factors. Be patient and give yourself some grace time to settle into a new place.