February 17, 2023
Travel is a fun way to destress and explore different things in life. For others, travelling is an essential part of their jobs. Whether for fun or for work, it’s important to ensure a good night’s rest to make the most of your trip.
But it’s no secret that travel itself can sometimes affect our sleep quality.
Our bodies follow a circadian rhythm that tells us when to stay awake and when to rest. However, this can be disturbed during a trip, especially when you need to sit in a car or plane for hours without your comfy mattress.
Luckily, there are several ways you can sleep more comfortably during and after travel. We’ll talk about them in this quick guide.
Traveling can help you unwind and introduce you to new experiences. However, long commutes, unfamiliar spaces, and jet lag can take a toll on your sleep quality.
Jet lag is a sleep disorder that happens when a person’s internal clock does not align with the time zone of an area. This typically happens when one crosses three or more time zones. This may be a temporary disorder that occurs when you travel out of the country, but it can also happen on very long car rides.
Some common symptoms of jet lag include:
Jet lag symptoms may subside after a few days as your body gets accustomed to the new time zone. This depends on how much your circadian rhythm should adjust.
Aside from disrupting your sleeping schedule, long hours and constant travel can also cause physical and mental exhaustion. Unlike jet lag, this stress, also called travel fatigue, can happen without changes in timezones.
Travel fatigue can be a result of many factors, like dehydration, irregular meal schedules, movement constraints, motion sickness, and inconsistent sleeping schedules during travel. This can cause the following symptoms:
Travel fatigue is more common for travellers who ride in cars or buses where the speed accelerates and decelerates frequently. Plane flights can also cause travel fatigue due to the pressurised cabins.
Aside from the stress and disorders that come with travelling, the alterations in your schedule can also affect your circadian rhythm. These include the need to sleep in a different time zone or take a long nap after the trip.
Although it’s understandable to pack your schedule during an important business trip or your most anticipated vacation, your body can be overstimulated, making it harder for you to fall asleep.
You surely don’t want to know what happens to your energy and concentration when you’re sleep-deprived. So make sure to plan out your sleep schedule when creating your itinerary.
Whether you're travelling or simply resting at home, an unsuitable sleeping environment won’t help you get the Zzz's that you deserve.
Several studies prove that simple changes in your bedroom setting can make or break your sleep quality. So, if you feel kind of uncomfortable, even in a hotel or spa, you are not alone.
You may feel tired the first night, but you will feel better as you adjust to your new surroundings. However, if your bedroom lacks a mattress that meets your sleeping requirements, you can expect nightly interruptions.
Oh, you may also experience this when visiting a friend's or family member’s house. That’s why we always recommend hosts invest in a high-quality mattress for their guests.
Sleep deprivation, both chronic and short-term, can significantly impact your physical and mental health. This includes drowsiness during the day, feeling irritable, a lack of energy, and a lack of concentration.
Lack of quality sleep is even one of the common causes of road accidents. While symptoms of short-term sleep deprivation only last for a few days, others escalate to chronic sleep concerns.
Whether you're travelling for work or for pleasure, getting a good night's sleep is critical to making the most of your trip. Luckily, achieving a healthy night’s rest while travelling is not an impossible dream.
Reduce your travel stress by planning ahead of time, from packing to budgeting to preparing your itinerary. It’s also important to remember that not everything will go according to plan, and some alterations are definitely okay.
Before your planned trip, start helping your body adjust to your new sleep schedule. You can gradually adjust your sleep schedule one hour at a time to match your travel sleep schedule.
If you’ll stay in a place where the time zone is different, do your best to blend in with the locals’ sleeping schedules. If you know that you’ll arrive at your destination at night, try staying awake throughout the flight so you can get quality sleep when you arrive. If you arrive in the morning or afternoon, do your best to snooze during the flight.
If you know that you have to stay in the car or plane for hours, make sure to wear comfy clothes so you can comfortably move. Cosy up with a blanket or a mini pillow to rest your head on. If you think that even a hotel can't make you comfortable, try bringing your own pillow, sleep mask, or anything else that can make you feel at home.
Eat healthy and drink enough water before, during, and after the trip. Watch your alcohol and caffeine consumption.
Is it healthy to take a nap when travelling? Yes. A restful nap is important when travelling for a long period of time. However, limit your naps to less than 30 minutes so you can still enjoy a full rest at night.
Traveling is fun. You get to see unfamiliar places and experience new things. But it can pose potential downsides when it comes to your sleep. Luckily, with some planning and preparation, you can now enjoy travelling while still achieving healthier sleep.
Of course, there is definitely no place like home. After long hours of travel, it’s best to go home to a restful and comfy sleeping surface. Choose the best for your sleep to make your bedroom the ultimate sleep sanctuary!
This guide is made for educational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of a qualified medical professional with regards to your sleep health.
Somnuz @ Hillview
34 Hillview Terrace Level 3, Singapore, South West 669254, Singapore
Store Hours: 11 AM - 7 PM (Opens Daily)
61 Ubi Road #01-34
Singapore, North East 408727, Singapore
Store Hours: 11 AM - 7 PM (Opens Daily)
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