What is the phenomenon of jet lag and how can it be managed?
Jet lag occurs when the body's natural clock, called the circadian rhythm, is disrupted due to traveling to another time zone. . This temporary sleep disorder can have a negative effect on the energy level of the person's body as well as the level of alertness. In this article, along with the full introduction of jet lag, effective solutions to manage this condition are also discussed.
The body clock works on a 24-hour scale. Your body benefits from an internal and biological clock, which is responsible for some specific biological activities, such as the release of certain hormones during rest or the increase in temperature when awake. Fortunately, jet lag is a temporary disorder that is also known as desynchronosis or circadian dysrhythmia in various texts. People who experience jet lag usually show these symptoms:
- Stomach discomfort
These complications are not dangerous, but they can easily affect a person's condition. Preparing for the experience of jet lag and trying to prevent this state can be considered a suitable solution to manage this disorder. At least a person can travel with more confidence and not worry about the symptoms of jet lag.>
As mentioned, your body goes through a 24-hour cycle naturally, which is known as the circadian rhythm. Your body temperature, hormones, and other biological functions rise or fall based on this biological cycle at each stage of the day and night. jet lag officially disrupts the body's biological clock for a number of reasons:
The origin and destination clocks are out of sync
When you travel to a new time zone, the biological clock Your body is not adjusted to the new environment at the very beginning. For example, if you travel from Atlanta to England at 6pm and land in London at 7am, your body will think it is 1am. In this scenario, what happens is that your body tries to release hormones to make you extremely tired and ready for a night's rest. While you should stay awake for another 12 to 14 hours to help your body adjust to the new position and time. Help him get used to the new time situation more easily, but some factors make it difficult to rest on the plane. These factors include temperature, noise, and mental comfort.
On the other hand, you may rest for too long on the plane and your body clock will be stuck in some kind of new time position. This can happen because the barometric pressure in an airplane is usually lower than it is on the ground. The same procedure applies to mountainous areas that are at least 2.44 km above sea level. While there is a lot of oxygen in mountainous areas, the lower pressure causes less oxygen to be transported in the bloodstream. The lower oxygen level also makes the person feel lethargic and tired, which is a factor to sleep. affect the human body. This issue can be explained in this way that light can determine the level of melatonin hormone secretion. The hormone melatonin helps the body prepare for sleep. Melatonin is secreted in the brain at night. During the day and when sunlight reaches humans, the production of melatonin is reduced and therefore the human body becomes more alert.
Medical studies show that travel fatigue is another factor associated with jet lag. Changes in cabin pressure as well as changes in altitude during air travel can cause symptoms of jet lag. Some people may easily experience complications due to the change in height; Complications that can worsen the phenomenon of jet lag:
Dehydration or dehydration
Dryness of the body due to excessive loss of body water can be related to the occurrence of jet lag symptoms. If you don't drink enough water during the flight, you are dehydrated. In addition to this, the humidity levels in the plane are low, which can cause the body to lose more water.
Coffee and alcohol
Airplane passengers are more inclined to drink coffee while traveling. . Drinking coffee, tea, and other caffeinated beverages can prevent you from getting enough sleep during a flight. Caffeine can also cause dehydration. Consumption of alcoholic beverages can also worsen the quality of sleep in humans. Alcohol can cause side effects such as fatigue, headache, vomiting and other side effects.
Other contributing factors
The more you travel between different time zones in a short period of time, the worse the effects of jet lag appear. Older travelers are likely to experience more severe symptoms of jet lag than younger travelers. In any case, young travelers adapt to the new situation more easily.
On the other hand, the route you are flying can also have a very important effect on the symptoms of jet lag. Based on studies, it has been determined that traveling to the east can cause worse symptoms. The reason for this can be summed up in the fact that staying awake for a long time helps the body to adapt to the new time more easily than forcing your body to fall asleep prematurely.
Symptoms of jet lag h2>
Jet lag occurs when the natural rhythm of the body clock is disrupted by air travel. As you battle your body's natural rhythm to adjust to a new time, you may experience jet lag symptoms. These symptoms usually appear in the first 12 hours after entering a new position and may remain in the person for several days. The most common symptoms of jet lag are:
- feeling a bit confused
- Digestive and intestinal problems including stomach upset and diarrhea
- Too much sleep
For more People have mild symptoms of jet lag. If you are experiencing more severe symptoms such as cold sweats, vomiting, and even a fever, these symptoms may be caused by another problem, including:
- a virus
- Altitude sickness
If the mentioned symptoms remain in the body for more than 24 hours, it is better to consult a doctor for treatment.
Prevention From jet lag
You can prevent or reduce jet lag with a few simple strategies and recommendations. :
1. Resting on the plane
Try to rest when traveling by air, especially when traveling to the east. Using blindfolds and earplugs can prevent jamming and other visual and audio disturbing factors.
2. If you've arrived at your destination and it's nighttime, try to stay awake for a few hours
It's a good idea to reset your body's sleep schedule. When entering a new time position, go to bed but stay awake until morning to get used to the new time position.
3. Choose the right flight time
The best time to fly is when you arrive at the destination in the evening after the journey is over. In this case, it is enough to stay awake until midnight and it is really not a difficult task.
4. Take a nap
If you are extremely tired and need some sleep, you can rest for 20-30 minutes. Of course, you should be careful not to exceed this time; because it prevents sleep at night.
5. Plan for a few more days
It is common for celebrities and athletes to plan to arrive a few days early before their main job to get used to the new time conditions. This solution can be a suitable option for ordinary people.
6. Anticipate Changes
If you plan to fly east, it's best to book ahead of time. Wake up a few hours earlier every day. If you want to fly west, do exactly the opposite; It means going to bed a few hours later at night. This procedure can significantly prevent jet lag.
7. No caffeinated and alcoholic beverages
Avoid caffeinated and alcoholic beverages the day before the flight as well as during the flight. These drinks can interfere with the body clock and prevent sleep. This procedure means that consumption of the mentioned drinks can worsen the symptoms of jet lag.
8. jet lag diet
Avoid eating salty and sugary foods while traveling; Because they dehydrate the body. Instead of these types of food, turn to consuming fresh fruits and herbs. On the other hand, avoid overeating. A balanced diet can reduce the symptoms of jet lag such as poor sleep, fatigue and upset stomach
If it's hard for you to sit in a plane seat for several hours, it's not bad to give your body exercises to help your body fall asleep more easily. Try to stretch your leg while sitting on a chair. If you are going to have several flights in a row, you can do some simple exercises at the airport instead of sitting.
10. Drinking herbal tea
You can drink herbal tea and other beverages on Bioride instead of regular tea. Research has shown that these types of herbal teas before bed can help you fall asleep better and have a better sleep quality.
Treatment of jet lag
Jet lag does not always require treatment, but if the symptoms of this phenomenon remain stable and the person is unable to do daily tasks, there are some solutions to treat jet lag. There's a lag.
Sunlight officially tells your body that it's time to wake up. If you can, go outside during the day to get some sunlight. This officially works to reset your body clock and reduce the symptoms of jet lag.
Some light boxes and lamps can work to reset the circadian rhythm. to be These artificial lights actually simulate the action of sunlight and help the body to wake up. As soon as you arrive at your new destination, you can use this method to stay awake for a few hours so that your body can better adapt to the conditions.
As mentioned earlier, Melatonin is one of the important hormones of the body that helps the body to sleep at night. You can easily get melatonin medicine from the pharmacy to tell your body system to rest when your body is alien to sleep.
Melatonin medicine works quickly and therefore, after taking the medicine more It doesn't take more than 30 minutes for you to fall asleep. You must be aware that if you have taken melatonin to sleep, you must sleep for a full 8 hours; Because if you wake up earlier than this time, you will experience a very intense feeling of fatigue.
If you experience insomnia while traveling or sleeping in new places is extremely painful for you, it is better to talk to a doctor about taking sleeping pills. Some sleep medications can be easily obtained from pharmacies, but some other medications must be prescribed by your doctor. However, it is better to use these drugs as the last option for each person; Because there are various side effects for this class of drugs, especially diazepam. Also, addiction to these drugs is another important limitation that should be taken seriously.
Nourishment on time
In a research, it has been determined that if a person can eat lunch, dinner and breakfast on time. consume, the body will be helped more to get used to the new environment. As a result, the symptoms of jet lag also decrease. After arriving at a new destination, since the circadian rhythm is disrupted, the human body signals hunger at irrelevant times. If you feel hungry at the standard time for the three main meals, it is better to ignore these hunger signals and consume the three main meals according to the new schedule. This procedure has been found to significantly reduce the effects of jet lag.
Take a warm shower
It is better to take a warm shower before going to bed. . This work, while relieving fatigue and lethargy, can increase the blood supply in the organs, and as a result, the person falls asleep more easily.
Other home remedies
- Before traveling well Rest and don't start your trip with a lack of sleep.
- Eat a light dinner a few hours before your flight.
- Don't work on your smartphone, TV or computer a few hours before going to bed. .
- Before going to sleep, try to reduce the ambient light.
- To improve the sleeping condition, consume herbal teas and drinks.
- On the first night after arrival At your destination, have a full night's sleep.
- Try to reduce possible distractions by turning off your phone and electronic devices.
- Use earplugs and blindfolds to eliminate annoying sound and images when Use sleep.
- Adjust your sleep schedule to the new position.
Jet lag; A phenomenon that is easily managed
If you live in the destination for a few days, your body will gradually adapt to the new environment. Adjusting the habit of eating, working and sleeping can strengthen the process of returning to a routine life in you. While you're trying to adjust to your new schedule, don't be too hard on yourself! Because this phenomenon will end in a few days. Instead of struggling and being uncomfortable, you can correct your circadian rhythm by adjusting your sleeping hours and enjoy your trip.