August 15th, 2011
08:06 AM ET

Can melatonin prevent jet lag?

Every weekday, a CNNHealth expert doctor answers a viewer question. On Mondays, it's pediatrician Dr. Jennifer Shu.

Question asked by Ken from Palm Springs, California:

I'm about to travel to the other side of the world for a week and have to work the day after I get back. I've heard melatonin can help prevent jet lag when I return and would rather take that than medicine. What else can I do?

Expert answer:

Thanks for your question. Traveling across the world and turning your biological clock essentially upside down can definitely cause problems with sleep, both while you are away and when you return.

Melatonin is a hormone found in the body that is also available in synthetic form as a supplement that may help stimulate sleep. As with medications, there may be side effects when taking supplements.

For melatonin, these can include nausea, headaches, dizziness, confusion and nightmares. Also, supplements may interact with any medications you may be taking. Before your trip, your doctor can advise whether melatonin is a good option for you and if so, the appropriate amount to take and when to take it (usually about an hour before the desired sleep time and either upon your return, during your trip, or both).

Some nonmedical options to try include staying hydrated, exercising or being active during the time you are supposed to be awake, and getting enough overall sleep before, during and after travel if possible.

Using eyeshades or room darkening curtains or blinds and a white noise machine may help you sleep better when you want to. Light therapy (such as from exposure to the sun or another bright light) may also help get you back on track.

Some people find that either increasing or avoiding certain foods (such as eating more protein to stay awake or more carbohydrates when trying to sleep) can help them recover more quickly from jet lag.

Readers, if you have any other tips, please feel free to comment below. Thanks!

Follow @CNNHealth and @LivingWellDoc on Twitter.

soundoff (196 Responses)
  1. what is tadalafil

    what is tadalafil https://elitadalafill.com/ generic tadalafil united states

    April 6, 2021 at 17:08 | Report abuse | Reply
  2. sky casino no deposit bonus code

    My spouse and I stumbled over here by a different web address and thought I might as well check things out.
    I like what I see so i am just following you. Look forward to looking into your web page yet again.

    April 7, 2021 at 23:11 | Report abuse | Reply
  3. video of transurethral alprostadil admimistering

    alprostadil cream cost https://alprostadildrugs.com/ c-alprostadil

    April 7, 2021 at 23:36 | Report abuse | Reply
  4. does topical

    injectable erectile dysfunction drugs https://alprostadildrugs.com/ alternative to alprostadil

    April 11, 2021 at 16:56 | Report abuse | Reply
  5. best viagra pills 25 mg canada pharmacy

    order generic viagra online canada https://canadaviagrastore.com/ viagra canada pharmarcy

    April 12, 2021 at 00:27 | Report abuse | Reply
  6. no prescription generic sildenafil online

    prices of sildenafil https://eunicesildenafilcitrate.com/ sildenafil citrate 100mg

    April 12, 2021 at 08:19 | Report abuse | Reply
  7. purchase zithromax

    zithromax otc https://zithromaxes.com/ z-pak generic name

    April 12, 2021 at 12:43 | Report abuse | Reply
  8. zithromax price

    zpack name https://zithromaxes.com/ zithromax drug class

    April 12, 2021 at 14:12 | Report abuse | Reply
  9. erectile dysfunction pills

    erectile prosthesis https://canadaerectiledysfunctionpills.com/ erectile assistance

    April 15, 2021 at 00:20 | Report abuse | Reply
  10. purchase zithromax online

    zithromax indications https://zithromaxes.com/ zithrmax

    April 15, 2021 at 09:22 | Report abuse | Reply
  11. buy vardenafil over the counter with no pres. online

    non-prescriptoin vardenafil https://vegavardenafil.com/ vardenafil vs tadalafil

    April 15, 2021 at 13:55 | Report abuse | Reply
  12. tadalafil online

    tadalafil daily use https://elitadalafill.com/ tadalis sx

    April 18, 2021 at 03:31 | Report abuse | Reply
  13. vardenafil cost

    vardenafil levitra https://vegavardenafil.com/ vardenafil cvs

    April 18, 2021 at 05:50 | Report abuse | Reply
  14. do you need a prescription for viagra in canada

    viagra canada non prescription https://canadaviagrastore.com/ cheap viagra from canada

    April 20, 2021 at 11:33 | Report abuse | Reply
  15. https://thuocladientu123.com

    Best view i have ever seen !


    April 21, 2021 at 10:58 | Report abuse | Reply
  16. cialis viagra combination canadian pharmacy

    canadian generic cialis 20mg https://canadacialisstore.com/ cialis viagra combination canadian pharmacy

    April 22, 2021 at 01:09 | Report abuse | Reply
  17. teva pharms vardenafil

    vardenafil 20mg dosage https://vegavardenafil.com/ vardenafil vs tadalafil which is better?

    April 22, 2021 at 05:44 | Report abuse | Reply
  18. tadalis sx

    tadalafil tablets https://elitadalafill.com/ tadalafil daily use

    April 22, 2021 at 06:38 | Report abuse | Reply
  19. order tadalafil

    generic tadalafil https://elitadalafill.com/ buy tadalafil

    April 22, 2021 at 21:43 | Report abuse | Reply
  20. Babatunde Omidina


    April 23, 2021 at 10:54 | Report abuse | Reply
  21. viagra canada

    viagra canada purchase https://canadaviagrastore.com/ viagra purchase from canada

    April 25, 2021 at 05:59 | Report abuse | Reply
  22. erection pills online viagra

    erectile disorder dsm v https://canadaerectiledysfunctionpills.com/ erectile disorder exam

    April 25, 2021 at 10:30 | Report abuse | Reply
  23. alprostadil injection demonstration video

    injectable drug for erectile dysfunction https://alprostadildrugs.com/ alprostadil suppository

    April 25, 2021 at 23:19 | Report abuse | Reply
  24. sildenafil generic nz

    sildenafil 20 mg tablet cost https://eunicesildenafilcitrate.com/ cheap sildenafil citrate tablets

    April 26, 2021 at 12:26 | Report abuse | Reply
  25. lịch chiếu phim starlight đà nẵng

    This is a topic that's near to my heart...
    Many thanks! Exactly where are your contact details though?

    April 26, 2021 at 16:56 | Report abuse | Reply
  26. chloroquine autophagy

    chloroquine without prescription https://chloroquineorigin.com/ who chloroquine

    April 26, 2021 at 19:29 | Report abuse | Reply
  27. plaquenil eye

    male erectile complex https://plaquenilx.com/ treating erectile dysfunction without drugs

    April 26, 2021 at 20:36 | Report abuse | Reply
  28. plaquenil tablets

    erectile disorder symptoms https://plaquenilx.com/ when does erectile dysfunction start

    April 26, 2021 at 22:00 | Report abuse | Reply
  29. generic sildenafil paypal

    sildenafil buy online usa https://eunicesildenafilcitrate.com/ best sildenafil pills

    April 28, 2021 at 19:22 | Report abuse | Reply
  30. priligy

    dapoxetine hydrochloride 60 priligy usa

    April 30, 2021 at 22:44 | Report abuse | Reply
  31. canadian pharmacy no perscription generic cialis

    canadian pharmacy cialis no prescription https://canadacialisstore.com/ canadian meds cialis

    May 1, 2021 at 23:00 | Report abuse | Reply
  32. dysfunction

    can erectile dysfunction be cured naturally https://canadaerectiledysfunctionpills.com/ erectile curvature

    May 2, 2021 at 14:31 | Report abuse | Reply
  33. avanafil

    buy avanafil canada avanafil 50mg

    May 4, 2021 at 09:12 | Report abuse | Reply
  34. dapoxetine

    priligy tablets for sale buy avanafil usa

    May 4, 2021 at 10:55 | Report abuse | Reply
  35. dapoxetine

    dapoxetine pills for sale priligy uk

    May 6, 2021 at 12:00 | Report abuse | Reply
1 2 3 4

Post a comment


CNN welcomes a lively and courteous discussion as long as you follow the Rules of Conduct set forth in our Terms of Service. Comments are not pre-screened before they post. You agree that anything you post may be used, along with your name and profile picture, in accordance with our Privacy Policy and the license you have granted pursuant to our Terms of Service.

About this blog

Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.