Sleep Better When You Travel: 6 Items The "Sleep Doctor" Wants You To Pack

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Playing How To Sleep Better When You Travel | Sleep Doctor Michael Breus

It happens to the best of us — you come back from vacation feeling more tired than you were when you left AND your skin is going through it. Chances are it's because you didn't sleep well because you were in a new, unfamiliar environment. 

"I call sleep nature's botox," "Sleep Doctor," Dr. Michael Breus, says. "Sleep deprivation can actually cause an increase in rosacea and an increase in acne."

So, what does the "Sleep Doctor" himself do to sleep well while he travels? He packs a sleep kit for the plane and hotel — and here's what's inside. 


1. Eye mask

"You want to block out that light that might be coming in," the doc says.

2. Noise-canceling headphones or earplugs (for obvious reasons)

3. Water bottle

"You can get incredibly dehydrated on an airplane, because the air isn't very good," Dr. Breus explains. "Drinking alcohol on airplanes or carbonated beverages only makes it worse." 

4. Compression socks, which help with circulation when you're sitting for hours

"They're not just for old people," Dr. Breus quips. 

As for sleeping in hotel rooms, no matter how comfy that hotel bed is, it could still take your brain a few nights to acclimate to the new environment. (And usually, by the time it does, it's time to head home — are we right?)

"There's this thing called the first night effect," the "Sleep Doctor" explains. "This happens anytime you're in a new environment — even if you're going back home to your parents' house. The first night, you're still not going to sleep well, because your brain is constantly looking around [at the new environment]."


5. Night light

"When you get up in the middle of the night to use the restroom," he explains, "you reacclimate and you're not looking around and bumping into things." 

6. Aromatherapy — specifically a pillow mist — that you use at home (that's key!)

"If you use it at home and then in your new destination," Dr. Breus says, "your brain thinks you're in your old destination."

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