The Jakarta Post
A recent study by The Sleep Judge revealed that 61 percent of flyers experience “below average” or “very poor” sleep during flights. (Shutterstock/Atstock Productions)
There is no right or wrong way to sleep on a flight. Some people lean to their sides, or sit in an upright position, others’ heads fall into the aisle. Whatever works for them.
However, a recent study by The Sleep Judge revealed that 61 percent of flyers experience “below average” or “very poor” sleep during flights.
If you can relate to this, you might blame the reclining seat in front of you. Their inconsideration cost you your comfort. But the person reclining their seat probably does not get an “average” sleep either.
“Reclining and leaning to the sides are the worst positions,” Haley Green, spokeswoman for The Sleep Judge says, referring to the study. As it turns out, leaning forward and placing your head on the tray table results in the best quality sleep.
Even though it may seem the plane is determined to keep you awake, there are hacks to gain bits of comfort here and there as compiled by Forbes:
Some seats are better than others
"Window seats are the best option, as you can lean on the wall and let your body relax more. Plus, you won’t have to get up when your neighbor wants to visit the bathroom,” John Breese of Happysleepyhead.com suggests.
If you are in the front of the plane, aim for that window, avoid the aisle. If you are in the middle part of the plane, aim for the middle seat.
Try to avoid the rear of plane in general, but if you have to choose one, battle for the window seat. Do not get the middle seat. This way you get to minimize noise and wake up less cranky.
"Water is your best friend," says Brett Manders, an international airline pilot and author.
Stay away from alcohol, as it might mess with your sleep cycle. Make sure that you’re hydrated during the flight, but not too hydrated that you need to make a repeated bathroom trips in the middle of your sleep.
Comfortable clothes only
"If you’re planning to get some sleep on a flight, you shouldn’t wear jeans that will squeeze your belly," says Breese.
Wear loose and comfortable clothes for maximum sleep quality. If the cold bothers you, dress in long sleeves, pants and warm socks.
Bring sleep gear
If possible, bring along two pillows, one for neck support and the other for lower back support.
Eye masks can also help block the plane's lights and induce calmness in your sleep.
Trade the earplugs for some peaceful, relaxing music, or try to meditate in your seat. The sound of nature might also be a good choice.
If all this does not work, you might want to consider taking the right pill.
Andrew Steinberg, a travel concierge, recommends the anti-anxiety pill Ativan.
“Ativan works as a great aid and goes through your body quickly with zero side effects or residual drowsiness,” he says. (vel/kes)
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