Jet lag is a condition that occurs as a result of long distance travelling on a high-speed aircraft traversing transmeridian. The condition is also known as desynchronosis or time zone change syndrome. The east to west or west to east travel on a rapid pace results in the change of the circadian rhythms of a body resulting in disorders while sleeping. It is said that with the passage of each time zone the person would take one day to adjust to it. Because of this, the condition can sometimes last for several days. The condition is usually affected to the pilots and staff of the airline, and also frequent travellers.
There are several regulations put into place to combat this condition that affects the pilots. Jet lag is classified as a physiological condition and is affected more on people travelling from west to east in comparison to the east to west. The condition got the name jet lag because the condition was unheard of before the commercial jet airlines came into existence.
The jet airlines help in the process of travelling fast enough to cause the condition compared to the other type of airlines. None of the other means of travel has been able to produce the condition as the pace is much slower compared to jet airlines. These are the reasons why people suffer from jet lag.
Body clock changes
The body clock gets out of sync when we travel from a time zone to a different one in short period of time. This results in the body going through the daylight and darkness cycle that is completely different from what they usually experience. The rhythm of the body is called circadian rhythm and if the natural pattern of this rhythm is met with any change, it results in a change in eating, working, and also the sleep-wake pattern of the body. Until the body’s ability to respond to these changes normally is not won back, the person will remain jet lagged.
Change in hemisphere
The complications increase in case it is not only the time zones that change. If the hemisphere also changes while travelling, it results in a severe condition of jet lag and seasonal changes. This is because the person has to adapt to the change in time zone and also the change in season as the northern and southern hemisphere have different climatic conditions throughout the year. The seasonal phenomena can result in bringing back the condition that was dormant in you and result in further complications.
It is also proved that the cabin pressure of an airline also plays an important role in jet lag. This is because the oxygen level in the aircraft is less compared to the sea level, resulting in the brain receiving less amount of oxygen that it needs.
But jet lag is caused only when there is a change in time zone while travelling. If you travel north or south directly with involving a change in the time zones, it will not result in you developing jet lag. Jet lag does not usually occur to a person who has travelled only one or two time zones.