If you have big plans for Spring Break—especially if you’re traveling overseas—you’ll want to check this out because we’ve got some legit solutions for how to prevent jet lag. Intrigued? Read on to save yourself and your fam from jet lag-associated crankiness.
Even though your body will eventually adjust to travel-induced time changes on its own, some people take longer than others for this to happen. So how can you counteract the not-so-pleasant symptoms of jet lag? Experts suggest stopping jet lag before it even starts.
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Assistant professor at Stanford University’s Center for Sleep Sciences and Medicine, Jamie Zeitzer, told TIME, “The best way to alleviate jet lag is to obtain proper light exposure, which will realign your internal circadian clock to your new time zone.” Zeitzer suggests getting more morning light exposure and avoiding evening exposure as you travel east.
Charmane Eastman, professor in the Department of Behavioral Sciences and founding director of the Biological Rhythms Research Laboratory at Rush University Medical Center in Chicago, also told TIME that you can, “Trick your circadian clock into thinking that day and night have changed.” According to Eastman, you can do this by changing the time of light/dark exposure gradually each day. Make the adjustments by the direction you plan on flying. If you’re traveling east you’ll need to go to sleep earlier (and wake earlier) on the days leading up to your trip.
Along with these tips, experts also recommend staying hydrated, skipping sleep-disrupting alcohol on your flight and getting active or exercising upon arrival.