Could a Vacation Make You Tired?
respondents said they felt more tired when they returned home from
their vacations than they did before they left. The planning process,
later bedtimes and unfamiliar or uncomfortable accommodations were some
of the reasons people were tired when they came home, the survey said.
survey demonstrated that 54 percent of respondents reported returning
home tired from vacation, including 19 percent who described themselves
as "very tired" or even "exhausted."
would expect that vacation would dramatically reduce the number of
people reporting to be tired but instead there was an increase," said
Dr. Roger Cadieux, a clinical professor of psychiatry. "Clearly,
vacations are fraught with obstacles to sleep and relaxation, and the
problems often begin before you leave home."
survey of 1,000 Americans, all of whom traveled in the last year,
indicates that sleep loss often begins before the vacation starts,
according to the findings. Fifty-six percent packed the night before or
on the day of the trip and 32 percent went to bed at least two hours
later than normal due to this lack of advanced preparation, the study
get an early start on the morning of the trip, 54 percent reported
waking up earlier than usual; of those who were employed at the time of
their vacation, 36 percent reported working harder or staying at the
office later than usual prior to the trip and 26 percent said they lost
sleep because of the increased job pressure, the study said.
easily add to their sleep deficit before the start of their vacation,"
said Cadieux. "As a result, they make it much more difficult to
recharge their depleted batteries in the course oftheir vacation."
their vacation, many respondents said normal sleep habits were
disrupted; most people tend to stay up later and wake up earlier,
according to the survey. Approximately 22 percent of individuals
vacationing for 10 to 14 days went to bed later than normal almost
every night, the study noted.
significant number of vacationers do not make sleep a priority on their
trips," said Cadieux; limiting your time in bed is one of the most
common ways to increase your degree of sleep deprivation, he added.
percent of respondents also reported having trouble getting a full
night of sleep once they were settled in bed. The most common reasons
for sleep problems included unfamiliar or noisy surroundings;
uncomfortable accommodations; and medical conditions, including
indigestion and chronic sleep problems associated with work, financial,
or family problems, the study found. In addition, women were
approximately two times more likely than men to experience sleep
problems during vacation.
identified several ways to improve sleep during vacation and to
experience relaxing respite: Start packing several days
before you leave. Don’t wait until the night before to decide
what you are going to pack.
Don’t overextend yourself before
vacation. Get several good nights of sleep before leaving and start
Make accommodations as familiar and
comfortable as possible. For example, when making reservations, request
a quiet room if you are sensitive to noise. Bring your own pillow and
comfortable pajamas to simulate and remind you of the comfort of your
Eat and drink moderately. Overeating may
cause indigestion and alcohol consumption can cause you to wake in the
middle of the night, disrupting a full night of rest.
Choose a vacation that provides optimum
relaxation if you could use the rest. The survey results show that 12
percent of those who visited family came home "exhausted" while 30
percent of those who went on a cruise came home "well rested."
Plan to get a full night’s
sleep. You can be involved in many activities during your vacation and
still get a full night of rest.
Stop worrying. Don’t put work,
family or financial problems on your vacation itinerary. If you must
work, limit your efforts to high-priority tasks.