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Summary Analysis of Jet Lag: Use of Melatonin and Melatonergic Drugs (Article Sample)


Jet lag comprises a constellation of symptoms that occurs as a result of
disruptions of entrainment associated with time zone transitions. The jet
lag symptoms include daytime fatigue, impaired alertness, insomnia, loss
of appetite, poor psychomotor coordination, reduced cognitive skills, and
depressed mood. The severity of jet lag symptoms depends on the number
of time zones crossed as well as the direction of travel. Eastbound travel
tends to cause diffi culties in falling asleep, whereas westbound travel
interferes with sleep maintenance. Clinical studies also indicate that jet lag
can exacerbate existing affective disorders. It has been suggested that dys-
regulation of melatonin secretion and occurrence of circadian rhythm dis-
turbances may be the common links which underlie jet lag and affective
disorders. Melatonin has proven to be highly effective for treating the
range of symptoms that accompany transmeridian air travel largely
because of its regulatory effects on the circadian system. The therapeutic


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Table of Contents TOC \o "1-3" \h \z \u PURPOSE OF THE STUDY PAGEREF _Toc11134089 \h 3MAIN FINDINGS PAGEREF _Toc11134090 \h 3REAL LIFE IMPLICATIONS PAGEREF _Toc11134091 \h 4HOW TO IMPROVE THE STUDY PAGEREF _Toc11134092 \h 4REFERENCE PAGEREF _Toc11134093 \h 5
Jet lag has been reported to affect the normal biological functioning of human beings. Consequently, interferes with the sleeping patterns of individuals. The effect is based on time zones crossed and the direction (Srinivasan, 2014, p.368). In addition, there are many factors that influence the symptoms including age (Srinivasan, 2014, p. 369). This necessitated for the analysis on the symptoms and solutions that have been adopted. Therefore, the purpose of the analysis was to assess the effects of jet lag and possible therapeutic solutions that can be used to overcome those effects.
Looking at the effect of jet lag, the analysis found out that the destabilisation during the flight leads to malaise, sleep disorders, low mental efficiency, anxiety, irritability and fatigue (Srinivasan, 2014, p. 368). Results showed that older persons had longer destabilisation as compared to younger individuals (Srinivasan, 2014, p.370). Under condition of non-use of melatonin, the heart rhythms linked to weak exogenous changes were quickly synchronised while with use of melatonin, the system was more rigid (Srinivasan, 2014, p.369). For travellers the activity rhythm rapidly shifted with change in time zone. However, the temperature rhythm remained closer to the initial schedule. In fact the destabilisation was evident even in the return flight and one day after arrival (Srinivasan, 2014, p.369). Using the Madrid-Tokyo flights, jet travellers had activity disruption the first day but the temperatures rhythms remained the same. But on the second day the temperature rhythm shifted. It should be noted that the return flight to Madrid caused both rhythms to shift. To evaluate the sleep pattern, travellers from japan to USA and Canada were used. The results revealed that in the second day, travellers’ had disrupted sleep following an eastward flight. However, there was no significant change in sleep time among westward travellers (Srinivasan, 2014, p.370). Use of exogenous melatonin was found to affect sleep propensity and regularity in the sleep cycle. This is because it shifted the circadian rhythm in humans. Using passengers that travelled east wards from UK to Australia, administering of melatonin was found to significantly reduce the symptoms of jet lag. In addition, melatonin taken during bedtime after arrival significantly reduced the effects of jet lag (Srinivasan, 2014, p.371). An experiment using volunteers revealed that timely administering of melatonin, physical activity and light exposure would significantly reduce the symptoms of jet lag. A study to evaluate the different melatonin preparation showed no significant difference between the slow and fast releasing preparations. However, the melatonin had a significantly higher effect on controlling jet lag as compared to non-use of melatonin. It was reported that a dose of 1mg significantly reduced the latency of persistent sleep in adults (Srinivasan, 2014, p.372). That is use of melatonergic ramelteon which has longer action duration than use of melatonin alone. In case of depression, r

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