Vacation is a chance to get away from it all – to put your work on hold and just relax for a little while. For some people, however, travel and sleep simply do not mix. You might enjoy a nice, relaxing day at the beach with your family, but if you cannot sleep at night, you might end up feeling just as fatigued and worn out as you do at home. Luckily, there are a few simple tricks you can try to improve your quality of sleep while on vacation.
Tips for Improving Sleep on Vacation
One of the most relevant causes of sleep problems during vacation is related to traveling across time zones. Your body gets used to the natural day-night cycle where you live, so when you travel across time zones, it may take some time for your circadian rhythm to catch up and for your body to adjust. Even if you do not travel across time zones, simply being in a place away from home is enough to cause sleep problems for some people. Below you will find a list of tips for ensuring quality sleep while you are away from home:
- Plan as much as you can ahead of time so you get a good night’s rest before you leave. Do not leave your travel plans to the last minute or else you might become stressed and frazzled, resulting in a late bedtime before you hit the road.
- Compile a sleep kit to bring with you as you travel. Include in the kit things like ear plugs, an eye mask, herbal tea bags, and perhaps a CD of soothing sounds or music.
- Eat right and exercise. Many people view vacation as a chance to throw the rules out the window, and they end up overindulging in rich foods and skimping on exercise. Eating too much heavy food and not getting enough exercise can have a negative impact on your sleep so try to maintain healthy habits while you travel.
- Request a hotel room on a quiet floor. Some hotels reserve certain rooms or entire floors for guests who want to get a good night’s sleep. These hotels may enforce restrictions against children, parties, and loud music – the rooms may also be located off the street or be equipped with double-paned windows to help keep noise out.
- Relax a little to settle down for bedtime. Try to keep good sleep hygiene when you are on the road by giving yourself a little bit of time to settle down before bed. Stop using your phone, computer, and TV about 30 minutes before bedtime and dim the lights to encourage sleep.
- Be aware of problems like sleep apnea and snoring that might impact your quality of sleep – consider investing in an anti-snoring mouthpiece to keep your airway open at night so you don’t lose sleep.
Going on vacation is a great opportunity to put your work and your stress behind you for a little bit. If you don’t get enough sleep, however, your vacation may not feel very restful. Follow the tips above to ensure a good night’s sleep when you are on the road.