Many scientists are interested in studies surrounding how to minimize jet lag for long distance travelers. Travelers have sworn to their favorite practice of how to combat jet lag such as adjusting sleep schedules in the days prior to traveling, taking the hormone melatonin, seeking out or avoiding light at certain times of the day or forcing the body to sleep and eat at local times immediately upon arrival. Scientists and researchers have realized that the best formula is a combination of all these practices.
As a general rule it takes about a day for each time zone traveled for a person’s body clock to catch up to local time. Thus crossing more times zone makes it more difficult to avoid symptoms. The severity of jet lag varies widely and symptoms can range from sleepiness to confusion. Overall, older people and very young people are affected worse with jet lag. Reasons being that older people’s body clocks are deteriorating while very young people’s body clocks are still developing. Researchers believe the most important aspect of counteracting jet lag is that you have to be motivated to want to do something about it. Whatever the practice that best helps you counter act the jet lag affects needs to be put into action as soon as one arrives to a new time zone, such as taking a sleeping pill to fall asleep at bedtime and drink coffee during the day to stay awake. Some people have shifted their body clocks but not everyone has the discipline or interest to preform such regimes in order to ease jet lag.