How To Get Over Jet Lag When You Get Home?
Whether you are traveling for pleasure or business, jet lag will likely play a role and make you feel tired just when you need to be at your best. Jet lag is definitely an unwanted gift that traveling brings to the party. Many are wondering “How to get over jet lag when you get home?” and we’re here today with a few tips and tricks to help you out.
Before we share our tips on how to get over jet lag when you get home, let’s talk about it in general.
What is jet lag?
Many talk about jet lag, yet some aren’t aware of what it actually is.
Jet lag is flight fatigue, a temporary disorder as a result of rapid air travel across several time zones. It is the desynchronization of a circadian rhythm, which is a disruption of our internal body clock.
The circadian rhythm is our “biological clock” and it regulates many bodily functions including eating, sleeping, and body temperature. It is software that controls a number of things in our bodies throughout the entire day. This software, however, is not immune to moving through time zones, and when we fly it breaks into complete disorder.
What are the symptoms of jet lag?
This temporary disorder causes tiredness, exhaustion, insomnia, indigestion, constipation, and diarrhea. Also, certain irritability, an impaired ability to concentrate, and memory problems are expected as your body struggles to cope with a new schedule.
How many time zones can I cross and still not have jet lag?
Even a 1-hour difference can cause jet lag. However, that is surely a mild one. When crossing less than 3 time zones, jet lag is unlikely to be a concern.
However, when you cross more than 5 time zones, then the typical jet lag occurs.
How long does jet lag last?
There is no right answer to this question. The more time zones you cross, the more severe the symptoms are likely to be. It takes roughly one day to recover from each time zone you travel through. Thus, if you crossed five time zones, the body will typically adjust in four to five days. But, it also depends on your age, general health, and stress management.
Does the direction of travel matter? Is jet lag worse east or west?
Yes. Adjustment to a new time zone is harder when traveling east than traveling west. This is because you “lose” time and you end up trying to fall asleep when your body is actually waking up.
How to get over jet lag when you get home?
And now we come to our main question – How to get over jet lag when you get home?
Jet lag is for amateurs, says Dick Clark, so let’s get pro and give you some serious advice on how to fight it.
14 tips & tricks (+ an extra 4) on how to get back on track ASAP!
When you’re home the first thing you want to do is throw your bags to the side, and jump into bed. However, with jet lag, not so fast.
- Stay awake during the day
Once you get home and relax, your body will be exhausted because of the long trip and time zone changes. Be ready to fight this and do not sleep during the day. If you have to, take power naps (20 minutes).
- Take a shower and brush your teeth
A shower (or a bath) relaxes your sore muscles and keeps your body hydrated. You want your body to stay hydrated both in and out. Brushing your teeth boosts you up a little.
- Go outdoors into the sunlight
Get as much natural light as you can. Daylight can help your body clock adjust and make you feel better.
Running, a quick walk, gym, or any sports, except chess :). It will boost your endorphins and stretch out the kinks which may occur after long flights. This will also improve the quality of your sleep.
- Prepare a few books, ideally some page-turners
You need a compelling book that will keep you going. You can also finish reading that amazing book you planned to read on your vacation.
- Spiritual healing
Prayer, yoga, meditation, or whatever suits you. Body, mind, and soul – get them all busy working out!
- Be sociable
Hanging out with your friends will help you stay awake and keep your spirits high.
- Keep calm and make a stress-free zone
Try to free your schedule as much as possible during the days after your arrival. Do not make any important decisions on the first day and avoid difficult and stressful work.
- Stay hydrated
Drink plenty of water upon arrival. Drinking warm water flushes the toxins whereas cold water is more refreshing.
- Eat a healthful diet
Vegan, Vegetarian, Ketogenic, Raw food, or Mediterranean diet… according to your needs. You don’t have to stick to any of these diets, but it is important that you avoid heavy meals which tend to stress the digestive system and burden your exhausted body even more. So, eat light, healthy meals frequently. Don’t forget fruit and vegetable, and avoid sugar.
- These foods will help your body clock to resync
Bananas, oatmeal, quinoa, cherries, ginger, chicken breast, turkey, lemonade, and black chocolate. Drink green tea, ginkgo, or ginseng in the morning, and chamomile and valerian in the evening.
- Stay away from toxins
Your body has suffered enough, so try not to add much to its misery. Avoid alcohol, cigarettes, or caffeine. Sleeping pills are a very bad idea.
Melatonin supplements are not sleeping pills per se. It is a naturally secreted hormone in our bodies and it tells us when it’s time for bed. If you can’t fall asleep, try this. Unlike sleeping pills, there are no strong side effects or addiction.
- Jet lag advisor
It helps you organize and do the best things to beat jet lag.
- Light therapy glasses
Special glasses provide light to your eyes to help you adjust back to a normal sleep pattern. They sure do look strange, so if anyone asks, tell them you are from the future and here to stop Skynet. https://www.re-timer.com/
- Consider medication
Jet lag is not a disease and doesn’t demand treatment, but if none of these strategies work for you, talk to your doctor about taking medicine to help you sleep or stay alert when necessary.
- Homeopathic remedy No-Jet-Lag
- The Timeshifter® app
If all these bits of advice are too generic for you, take this app into consideration. What makes this app so unique is its personalized approach, based on your sleep pattern, chronotype, and a range of personal preferences.
P.S. Last but not least – BE PATIENT
The human body is armed with a great ability to adjust and all it needs is to take a little time to get it right. Give it time!
Words of comfort
Until a certain cure is found, perhaps weary travelers should embrace Pico Iyer’s and William Gibson’s outlook:
“Because jet lag is so much a part of my life now, I tell myself I will make the most of it; attend to it, enjoy its disruptions, as I would those of a geographically foreign place.”
“Souls can’t move that quickly, and are left behind, and must be awaited, upon arrival, like lost luggage.”