September 29, 2011
Want to get some shut-eye on a long plane ride, but can't? Then I suggest you checkout this interesting NY Times article posted yesterday about the reasons why, and how you can overcome them.
The author writes about how he searched online for solutions, tried all of them, but none ever worked. So she decided to consult the chief of sleep medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital for expert advice. Some of the doctor's tips include resting your head on a shoulder of someone next to you, or getting a window seat and leaning your head against the wall.
Warning: sleeping against a stranger's shoulder can be
hazardous to your health. ;-)
Another sleep expert said the angle of the seat makes a difference, with a seat reclining 40 or more degrees allowing for better sleep. But of course, you're not going to get that unless you buy expensive first or business class seats.
The most eye-opening information (no pun intended) is the amount of emotional and sensory overload inside a commercial aircraft that makes it difficult to sleep, like all the noises and smells. For those long-haul flights where you can't fall asleep, one piece of advice is to start getting ready to sleep at your normal time and do what you do before going to bed, like brushing your teeth, changing clothes, readomg a book, etc.
Along these same lines, I think bringing sleep gear from home that is yours -- like a blanket, pillow and eyemask that shuts out the light -- that you wash in your own laundry can help you relax since their scent would remind you of your own bed at home. One solution we recommend, of course, is our PamBee travel blanket set (for PamBee designs, click here).
Another solution is to schedule flights during the day, or schedule a day to catch-up on your sleep after you arrive. Also, don't get tempted by overeating and skip the meal on the plane if you just ate before getting on.
For the full NY Times article, click here.