How to fight jet lag – 4 easy tips

HOW TO FIGHT JET LAG

As much as I love to travel, I don’t get the opportunity to travel across time zones very often. This Christmas though, I found myself boarding on three different planes and travelling across many time zones to reach the furthest ever destination in my life! I made it to Singapore and to the exotic Indonesia. The 8 hours’ difference between Ireland and the two 9 hours flights, resulted to a very bad jet lag, which I managed to get rid of quickly following some good practices. However, I couldn’t say the same for my jet lag on the way back which was the worst ever in my life. A combination of a sensitive belly from all the travelling and the jet lagged put me off for at least 5 days.

But, what did I do wrong and why was my jet lag coming back to Ireland worse than going out to Indonesia? After doing some research and looking what I did wrong, I am now able to give you some tips on how to reduce jet lag and get back your normal life faster.

To sleep or not to sleep?

They say that sleeping during a long hour flight is the best way to travel. However, this is not always the right thing to do. It all depends on where you are going, and whether it is day or night where you are arriving. While I was flying out to Asia I didn’t sleep on my flights (we took two 9 hours’ flights during day time) which meant that I was ready to go to bed when we arrived in Singapore.

Always try to think while you are travelling of what the time is at your destination and try to plan your sleep accordingly. In my case, I was kept awake as I was sitting in the most uncomfortable seat and stuck in the middle. At least this resulted in a good night’s sleep when I arrived.jet lag

Adjust your sleep before you get there

They say that the best way to fight jet lag, is to try to adjust to the time zone you are heading to from the comfort of your own bed. I know that this is not always the case and it can be very difficult to do so, but even if you change your sleeping patterns by an hour or two it won’t be as difficult when you travel. As the most of you, I didn’t put this one to practice, but I keep it in mind for next time.

Melatonin 

In some countries, like Greece and the US, you can take it over the counter from your local pharmacy, and it will help you sleep better through the night without waking up. Melatonin is a hormone that our own bodies produce, not to be confused with sleeping pills. By taking one tablet, or whatever the dosage is, before you go to bed, it is like telling your body that is sleeping time. However, if you are based in Ireland you will need a doctor’s prescription to take it. Maybe then you will need some help from a herbal tablet that will help you sleep. (Please always consult your pharmacist or doctor before taking any medicine).

When I arrived in Singapore, I took a melatonin tablet, which helped me with my sleep and I was the only person from our group that slept throughout the whole night. However, when I returned to Dublin, I didn’t take any which resulted in an interruptive sleep and me feeling like a zombie for at least 3 days.

 

jet lagged in Asia

{Although jet lagged I didn’t miss the moment of capturing the tropical rain in Singapore}

Choose your seat

This one might go for all flights, but if you are taking a long flight then having a more comfortable seat always helps. The exit row seats are always better as you can stretch your legs and sleep better.

As you read above on my way out the uncomfortable seat I had resulted in me staying up throughout the whole flight but this in a way was good as I shouldn’t sleep. On our way back, we were lucky enough and as the plane was not full we manage to get exit row seats which meant that there was a lot of space to stretch and sleep.

Of course, if you can afford to go to first or business class, the exit row would do.

Give the above a try and let me know how these work for you. Never let a jet lag ruin your holidays!

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