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Five Ways to Sleep Better on a Plane

We all know how hard it is just to fall asleep on a plane ride, let alone get any decent sleep. We’ve all seen the pictures in advertisements showing how people in first class have plenty of room to stretch out. But for the rest of we need to somehow sleep while sitting up. Even reclining the seat does not help.

Well, now sleep expert Martin Seeley, the CEO of MattressNextDay, gave us his list of the 12 best ways to get to sleep on the plane. Here now are the five most important of these, in no particular order.

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These sleep on a plane “hacks” are obviously intended for longer flights, say eight hours or more. On short trips, it may not even be worth the trouble of trying to sleep.

And please don’t be the person who does one of those disgusting things that we have all seen online, pictures of people sleeping on planes who just don’t care about how gross they are being or how they may offend the other passengers. For example, don’t ever let your feet hang over someone else’s seat and certainly at least leave your socks on. And don’t do the thing where you slowch down in your seat and put your feet up in the air.

One piece of advice for descent sleep on a plane that Martin Seeley gives may seem counterintuitive – Don’t drink. Doctors have explained for years that alcohol consumption is not recommended before bedtime. While it may help you does off, the effects are brief and you will soon wake up and have trouble falling back to sleep. Also, the sleep that you do manage to have will not be restful and you will wake up feeling tired.

As for a do instead of a don’t – wear loose fitting clothes. It’s always easier to relax and sleep when doing so, which is why we sleep in pajamas. Also, the flight in general will be easier if you do not wear dress clothing. But this does not mean that you should wear sweatpants. Just not anything too tight.

If you are traveling across time zones, then set your watch ahead – or back – to the time at your destination as soon as you board. This way you will have the psychological benefit of already thinking of the time according to the one in your destination.

Martin Seeley also says there is an advantage to getting to the airport early other than being sure to have enough time for check-in and going through the security check. Take advantage of the extra time, he says, to walk around the airport and go through the shops. Such activity will help to tire you out before you even board the plane, he explains.

Finally, it is important to bring your own sleep items. These include a pillow that you find comfortable, a sleep mask to cover your eyes and ear plugs. The airlines offer pillows, but they are not always comfortable or helpful in falling asleep. There are also many gross reports that the pillows are not always cleaned or replaced with new ones between flights.

As for the mask, even when the lights are all off there will still be many people around you watching movies or using their tablets. This will lead to frequent small flashes of light that can disrupt your sleep.



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