For those that don’t know about it, jet lag is extreme tiredness that is felt by a person after a long flight across several time zones, which disrupt the body’s 24 hour rhythm and sleep patterns. It can take a few days for your body to totally adjust to a new time zone and to be able to sleep at a regular time. You’ve gotten very little sleep and your body feels like it’s hung over. How nice it would be, you think, to settle yourself down into bed right about now. But it’s lunchtime in your new home – hello jet lag!
While there seems to be a consensus that jet lag is harsher when traveling eastward, it can hit you either way depending, also, on the flight time among other circumstances. If you want to spend a semester or a year studying abroad in Europe, you might be exposed to some jet lag after landing at your destination. While having an awesome place waiting for you, booked through Study Abroad Apartments, helps with your rest and peace of mind, here are some tricks to deal with jet lag.
Follow your body schedule
Some studies proved that, if you can, adjusting your schedule prior to the trip can help adjusting. When travelling from the US to Europe, the way to do that is to go to bed and to wake up earlier, to help your body clock advance.
Some frequent flyers also comment that it’s helpful to change your watch time to your new destination’s local time and keep yourself awake if it’s daytime there. If it’s nighttime in your destination, you can sleep on the plane, although it’s a bit harder as you’re not only fighting your body, you are also fighting the flight plan (which, as a long haul, will include some meals and snacks). Sometimes it’s easy to go with the flow, but the general advice here is to not force anything: sleep, or eat, if you can and/or feel like.
Airplanes have a dry atmosphere, so drinking plenty of water will not only be good for your skin, it will also help with the jet lag. Alcohol and caffeine are pretty toxic in high altitudes, as they actually dehydrate you. Water and juice are the way to go here and they will be very helpful to adjust to the new time zone later on.
Play with the lights
Another great tip comes from taking advantage of sunlight and dark times. Leaving the light on for as long as possible inhibits the production of melatonin, the hormone in your body that makes you feel tired so you can sleep. If you are having trouble falling asleep, do the opposite: darken your room, put on an eye mask or use earplugs. It will calm your body and help you doze off.
In conclusion, take it easy for the first few days in your destination, to slowly adjust to the environment and the timezone. A long flight is a great effort for your body and it deserves some time to recover.
Are you about to embark on the trip of a lifetime? Study Abroad Apartments offers some great options for students planning to study abroad. Just get in touch with us if you need any help finding somewhere to stay and we’ll make sure you have one of the best options out there!