Looks like our Madrid AGM is a “go.” For those of us coming from a long way away, we thought this topic might be useful. Maybe, some of us will find something new which we have not known before. Let’s hope.


After flying over multiple time zones, it can take several days for your internal clock to fully adjust to its new sleep schedule. The resulting desynchronization of your new surroundings with your natural circadian rhythm is what causes the physiological condition commonly known as jet lag.


This condition often causes increased daytime drowsiness and nighttime insomnia along with many other symptoms, mostly unpleasant… These include headache, fatigue, poor concentration, changes in appetite, and irritability. Fortunately, there are certain things that can be done to help prevent jet lag.


One thing you may wish to try, as it can help minimize the effects of jet lag, is strategic flight planning. If possible, book your tickets for an overnight flight. It’s often best to pick a flight that will arrive at your destination in the morning or afternoon, as such arrival times often make it easier to normalize your schedule.


You may also wish to prepare your body for the time change prior to leaving. In the week before your scheduled date of departure, start adjusting your sleep pattern to match that of your chosen destination. This may be easier said than done. The longer you are able to maintain your altered schedule before leaving, the less of an effect jet lag will have on you once you’ve arrived.


On the day of the flight, stay hydrated, but avoid caffeinated beverages. Caffeine consumption may make it harder for you to maintain your altered sleep schedule and prevent you from getting adequate rest on the plane. You may also wish to bring ear plugs and a sleep mask if you find it hard to sleep while flying.


If you were able to schedule a daytime arrival, avoid napping, if possible, after landing. Otherwise, any previous efforts at adjusting your sleep schedule may be for naught. Instead, spend your time outside. Exposure to bright sunlight during the day will help your internal clock adjust to its new surroundings.


If none of the above works to your satisfaction, and you are really suffering, turn to chemistry. Sleeping pills and such are very effective. Obviously, unlike the above, consult with your doctor.