For those of you who travel a lot, especially going through a very long distance, surely you have often experienced what is called jet lag. But the question is, what is jet lag? Why can you experience jet lag? Then how to overcome jet lag? Find all the answers below.
What is Jet Lag?
Jet lag is a physiological condition that occurs when the circadian rhythm in the body, also known as your body’s clock is experiencing interference. Jet lag occurs when a person’s sleep patterns change dramatically.
The person will feel sleepy, tired, lethargic, tired, and a little dizzy. Usually this happens when you travel by plane and pass through different time zones or simple causes such as when you change work shifts.
In addition, age also affects the severity of jet lag experienced. The older the person, the symptoms of jet lag they experience can also be more severe. As with young people, or children who usually only experience mild symptoms of jet lag and they can recover faster.
What Caused Jet Lag?
Before discussing in more detail about the causes of jet lag, you also needs to know first a brief understanding of the circadian rhythm or body clock that was mentioned earlier.
Body clock or circadian rhythm is a biological process in our body that usually occurs in a cycle of 24 hours. In the process, it regulates your daily activities such as time to sleep, awake, hunger, and body temperature.
When you travel long distances in a very short period of time such as when you are taking a plane to go abroad, then the circadian rhythms in your body need adjustments, and the adjustment process takes quite a while.
Your body needs to readjust the cycle between the new day and night. For example, you fly from Jakarta to Amsterdam, Netherlands. There the time may still showed at 3pm, but in Jakarta it is 9pm. Therefore you will feel sleepy because your body will tell you that it’s time for you to go to bed.
Not only that, the cycle of waking up will also be affected when you experience jet lag. Maybe on the first night you sleep in Amsterdam you will wake up at night because in Jakarta your body is used to getting up early. Jet lag occurs when the biological clock on your body is not synchronized with the time in the place you are currently on.
In general, jet lag usually occurs when you travel from west to east and passing more than two different time zones. But jet lag rarely occurs when you travel from north to south, even when the distance is very long, unless you pass several different time zones.
How to Prevent and Overcome Jet Lag?
Luckily, you don’t need to suffer for long because jet lag is a condition that generally occurs in a short time. In addition, if you maintain your health and fitness, you will definitely recover faster from jet lag.
In addition, when you are experiencing jet lag, there are several ways to deal with it yourself, without having to go to the doctor. Here are some tips that you can apply to prevent and overcome jet lag.
1. Make Early Adjustments
Before you go on a trip, you can first try to adapt to the sleeping pattern in your destination. If the place you are headed is in the east, then you can try to sleep at least 30 minutes faster than usual.
Vice versa, if the place you are heading to is in the west, you can adjust to sleep later than usual. Do it every day until your sleep pattern is almost similar to the time zone of your destination.
2. Leave Earlier
If you plan to go abroad for a business trip for example, don’t let yourself make an important presentation with conditions that aren’t optimal because of the jet lag. For that you can try something like leaving early. Thus, you have more time to get some rest first and your body can also adapt to the time there better.
3. Drink Plenty of Water
To prevent dehydration and headaches caused by the long duration of the flight, you have to fulfill your body fluids by drinking lots of water. Also as much as possible you should not consume caffeine like coffee.
4. Don’t Drink Coffee
The content of caffeine found in coffee can have a longer effect than usual so you will find it more difficult to adapt to hours of sleep at the destination. So it is better if you don’t drink coffee during the trip.
5. Use Aid to Get Some Sleep
During the long flight, you can anticipate the new sleep schedule that you must face later. In order to be able to sleep on a plane, you can use some items such as blindfold, earplugs, and neck pillows so you can be in a comfortable position.
6. Stay Active
When your are on a plane, you can try to stay active by moving your body at least once every two hours. You can walk in the aisle so that blood circulation in the body remains smooth.
7. Drink Warm Tea
As it is known that tea has natural ingredients can make your body and mind refreshed when taken in the morning. But there is a type of tea that is suitable to help you sleep, namely chamomile tea so you can sleep more soundly.
8. Expose Your Body to Sunlight
Morning sunlight can be a powerful medicine so that your body can adapt to the time in a new place. Morning sunlight can help normalize the biological clock on your body. It doesn’t need to be too long, just 5-10 minutes at around 8-9 am.
Overcome Jet Lag the Right Way
That was the tips to overcome jet lag for those who often traveled far away. But if you go to a place for a vacation for only a few days and have to go back home, you do not need to try too much to change your sleep pattern because it can be troublesome when you go home later.
Need other tips on long-haul flights? Check out, packing tips for those of you who like to travel a lot. That way you don’t have to bother with luggage when on vacation. Don’t forget that you can also book cheap flight tickets to your favorite destinations at tiket.com.