Get Rid of Jetlag

Font size Print

If you've ever flown a relatively long distance before - say, at least five or six hours away from home - then you have probably had to deal with jetlag. Jetlag can pose a major problem when it comes to traveling, causing you to have less enjoyment while on holiday and prompting a lot of unpleasant symptoms. Travelers use many different strategies to try and stop jetlag; unfortunately, there is no surefire way that is known for stopping jetlag.

Different people have different methods that they use to stop jetlag; what works for one person won't necessarily work for another one. If you want to work toward stopping jetlag during your travels, you should do a bit of research and try out different methods to see what works for you. It is possible to stop jetlag; it just might take a while to figure out what works best for you.

What exactly is jetlag?

Although many people throw around the term "jetlag" a lot, many have no real clue about what it actually means or what it refers to. Before stopping jetlag, you need to have at least a basic understanding of what it is. Essentially, jetlag is a disruption of the body's normal circadian rhythm caused by east to west or west to east travel. For instance, if you leave a location in the United States and fly to Australia, you will most likely suffer from jetlag because your body clock is still on U.S. time, but you are confronted with an entirely different day and night schedule.

People seek to stop jetlag symptoms as quickly as possible upon arriving at a new location because it can make them feel quite out of sorts and make them suffer from various symptoms.

Causes of jetlag

The biggest cause of jetlag is, without question, air travel. Driving somewhere generally gives your body ample time to adjust to different time zones. Flying, though, can throw your body clock for a real loop. Stopping jetlag can be difficult. Just because a flight is short in duration doesn't mean that you will stop jetlag symptoms. Instead, the distance that is traveled is the most important factor when it comes to stopping jet lag. A fast jet that takes you thousands of miles in a short period of time is much likelier to cause trouble than a longer flight that takes you a much shorter distance. People have tried to stop jetlag for years, but the length or manner of the flight involved has little to do with causing jetlag.

Other circadian rhythm sleep disorders

In addition to jetlag, there are other kinds of circadian rhythm sleep disorders. One of the more common of these relatively rare disorders is called delayed sleep phase syndrome, or DSPS. In this case, people feel the urge to go to bed for the night at inappropriately early or late times of day and may wake up at odd hours as well.

Many who try to stop jetlag are actually suffering from a condition like DSPS. Another circadian rhythm sleep disorder is called advanced sleep phase syndrome, or ASPS. In this case, people have trouble staying awake in the evening or staying asleep in the early morning hours. Stopping jetlag is actually easier than trying to manage conditions like these.

Help for stopping jet lag

Stopping jetlag isn't easy, but there are things that you can do to minimize the problem. In the days leading up to leaving for a trip, begin waking and going to sleep closer to the time zone you will be visiting. Doing this gradually helps your body adjust more gently, and can stop jetlag. While on the plane, get up and move around frequently and drink plenty of water. Studies have shown that you can stop jetlag much easier by not sitting still and becoming dehydrated on an airplane.

Airline crews have known for years that the over-the-counter sleep aid melatonin helps to fight jetlag by resetting the body's circadian rhythms. Melatonin is a compound produced naturally by the body to help regulate the sleep-wake cycle. Learn more.

Other sleep aids are available to help you manage your jetlag symptoms. By doing a bit of research, you can stop jetlag through the right sleep aids. A natural sleep aid is always suggested, as it is safer than traditional sleeping pills. To get an idea for what the # 1 sleep aid is and which one will most effectively help stop jetlag read our reviews.