A week ago I was in Hong Kong and stayed at a flat in this building. One of my concerns before this quick trip was the issue of jet lag. I usually have mild jet lag at night, when I wake up at 3am and toss and turn until 6, when I’m up for the day. If I don’t keep going all day, it’s rough going around 3pm.
Anyway, before I left, a friend was telling me about essential oils and how they’ve been so helpful for her family from bug bite itch relief to immunity boosting to sleeping aids. So I went to a class one evening to ask about treatments for jet lag.
Back in the 90s, I always bought a bottle of Melatonin when I flew home to the US. It was all-natural and sold at health food stores in Hong Kong and the US. I had good luck with Melatonin and usually slept through the night after a long-haul flight. But after hearing what my husband had to say about Melatonin, I’ll never touch the stuff again. It causes all sorts of heart issues and since natural medicines aren’t regulated by the FDA in the US, there are no warnings on them.
So Melatonin is out, as are sleeping pills. The essential oils pose no health threats, at least according to my doctor husband. So at that class I learned that peppermint and eucalyptus were to be taken to wake up and lavender and geranium were for going to sleep. Plus, I got a bottle of caplets with lavender and other oils to help bring on sleep.
I didn’t think I had anything to lose, and was advised to try the oils out before I went away. The peppermint and eucalyptus definitely woke me up. When dabbed on my temples, I felt like someone had pried my eyes open. I also tried some of sleeping caplets and slept well.
So when I arrived in Hong Kong, I needed to stay up for a few hours to meet my friends at the airport and get to the airbnb. A little dab of peppermint and eucalyptus did the job. That night I took a couple caplets and slept well until 3am, when I woke up. It was the normal toss and turn until 6ish.
A couple nights later the nightclub next door was still going strong at 1am and I was ready to go to bed because I had to be up at 7 the next day. A couple caplets did the job and I fell right to sleep.
On the plane home, I wanted to sleep most of the way so I wouldn’t be completely exhausted when I arrived in Chicago during the middle of the day. The key to battling jet lag is to get used to the new time as soon as possible. So in the plane, I dabbed on some lavender and geranium and slept most of the flight, apart from when I watched a movie and ate and drank a ton of water. I arrived in Chicago without that hazy, heavy feeling in my head. I was ready to sleep at 7pm, but slept through the night (I really never adjusted to Hong Kong time, so there’s that) and forced myself to get up at 8:15.
Have you ever used essential oils for jet lag? I’m definitely going to use them again.