You're traveling the world! Now you need to know how to deal with jet lag.
Every traveler feels jet lag to some degree if you cross time zones...
What you have to learn is how to prepare yourself ahead of your trip...
And then how to recover once you get there.
...So you can get the most out of your vacation time.
It's easy to leave packing until the last minute...
Then be running around picking up last minute things...
Doing laundry for that favorite travel shirt.
Pack a few days ahead... that will give you time to remember everything.
And try to keep the last couple of days before departure more stress free.
If you leave home more rested, jet lag will be easier to deal with once you're on your way.
Or maybe we should say, don't get dehydrated...
All the experts and websites say it.... drink plenty of water and avoid caffeine and alcohol.
Airplane cabins are dry, and caffeine and alcohol only dehydrate you more. What you want to do is stay as hydrated as you can.
Drinking lots of
water will give you a good excuse to get up and move around... on your
way to the restroom.
Take short walks every couple of hours even if you don't have to go (to the restroom that is.)
Do exercises while you're in your seat. Almost every airline has a page of exercises in their inflight magazine.... give them a try.
Some people say they can never sleep on a plane.... that may be true, but it can't hurt to shut off the light, forgo the movies, and just try to rest.
Staying hydrated, exercising, and sleeping a little on the flight will leave you feeling better when you get off the plane and better able to deal with jet lag.
Your body is going to tell anyway, so don't reinforce it!
You know... your body says it's time to sleep when your watch is telling you it's time for breakfast.
What you need to do to deal with jet lag is to try to get your body to agree with your watch... and your new time zone.
Forget about what time it is at home until you get back there.
If you arrive early in the morning, try to plan outdoor activities most of the day.
When we got to South Africa, we spent the day walking along a beach promenade and having an outdoor lunch in Umhlanga... That's a great way to deal with jet lag!
Walking, fresh air and sunshine will help reset your body clock.
A short nap might be OK, but avoid sleeping for a long time during the day.
Try to stay up until a reasonable hour... an early bedtime is OK that first day, as long as it's not 5 PM!
For night time arrivals, try to get some sleep as soon as you get to your hotel.
You'll probably be tired enough that you actually will sleep through most of the night.
In either case, you're apt to wake up early.
No use trying to stay in bed, you'll just toss and turn. Get up and go for a walk...
See what's happening on the streets in that new location, then try to stay up and keep going all day.
There are some drugs that help deal with jet lag, both over the counter and prescription.
We've never tried them, so we say, try those with caution.
We think it's only a matter of using these common sense tips for a couple of days, and you'll be over your jet lag and enjoying your holiday.