Doctor’s Express-Memphis: This Weeks Q&A

How can I work out how long it will take me to recover from jetlag after a trip to America?

Jet lag most commonly occurs after traveling through 5 or more time zones.  It isn’t the same as travel fatigue which can be “cured” by one good night sleep.  Jet lag takes longer- usually several days (depending on how many time zones are traveled). Westbound travel causes less disruption than eastbound travel. A rough estimate for recovery time is 1 hour per day if traveling westward and 1.5 hours per day if traveling eastward.


-What vaccinations are available to protect you against diseases when travelling in poorer countries? There are many vaccines available for travelers.  The vaccines needed depend on the country you are visiting.  An excellent resource for figuring this out is This site not only discusses travel vaccines, but also gives good information on other ways to prepare for your trip.

A few general travel tips: 1. Don’t over pack- remember you have to carry that suitcase!. 2. Carry essentials (like medication) separately on your person, don’t pack them in your suitcase. 3. Beware of drinking tap water while traveling, it may have bacteria in it that you aren’t used to which could give you diarrhea and stomach problems. 4. Take and USE sunscreen.  Nothing ruins a vacation like a bad sunburn! 5. RELAX! After all, its supposed to be a vacation!




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