Long flights can wear your body down with jet lag. And expats who travel frequently or who’ve flown across the globe to visit home can definitely relate: light-headedness, exhaustion, being more irritable than usual, poor appetite…
International Medical Clinic’s Dr. Nandini Shah shares some useful tips to help you handle the symptoms of jet lag better.
1. MUST. STAY. AWAKE!
Try to adapt to your new time zone as soon as possible when you arrive at your destination by avoiding sleep until it’s a reasonable time for bed.
Use eye shades or earplugs if necessary but do not oversleep in the morning.
2. Expose yourself to natural light
In the daytime at your destination, expose yourself to as much outside natural light as possible.
3. Prepare well
Though it is difficult to prevent jet lag, gradually adapting your sleep cycle a few days prior to departure helps. This includes getting up and going to sleep earlier (if travelling east) or later (if travelling west) to minimise the time difference when you arrive.
Melatonin: a form of the natural hormone produced by the body when it is dark, which can cause a person to feel sleepy and therefore help reduce some feelings of jet lag.
Sleeping tablets are generally best avoided. However, for long-distance trips, these tablets can be used for one to two nights.
In most cases, jet lag symptoms typically pass after a few days without the need for treatment and do not cause any long-term problems.
5. Manage the kids
But sometimes, even following these expert tips to a tee is futile when dealing with these little balls of energy. The realistic solution? Tailor these solutions to your kid. If you know you can push bedtime back, do it. If you know they need to eat, don’t wait.
And moms who’ve been there and done that know it all too well: When the little ones sleep well, you sleep well.
From The Finder, last updated December 2018
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