HomeGuilty about that afternoon nap? don't be

Guilty about that afternoon nap? don't be

17:22, 26/06/2021

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Nicole Lovalớn does not work for, consult, own shares in or receive funding from any company or organization that would benefit from this article, và has disclosed no relevant affiliations beyond their academic appointment.

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You may be familiar with that feeling of overwhelming sleepiness during the mid-afternoon. It’s comtháng, occurs whether you’ve eaten lunch or not, và is caused by a natural dip in alertness from about 1 lớn 3pm. So, if you find yourself fighting off sleep in the middle of the day & you’re somewhere where you can have sầu a nap, then vì chưng it.

Taking the time for a brief nap will relieve the sleepiness almost immediately và improve sầu alertness for several hours after waking. And there are many other benefits too.

Understanding why we nap

People nap for lots of reasons, some which are:

to catch up on lost sleep

in anticipation of sleep loss khổng lồ avoid feeling sleepy later on

for enjoyment, boredom or lớn pass time.

Napping is relatively comtháng. In fact, about 1/2 of us report taking a nap at least once per week.

Xem thêm: Bố Họ Trương Đặt Tên Con Trai Là Gì, Con Trai Sinh Năm 2021 Đặt Tên Gì

Napping rates are greater in countries lượt thích Greece, Brazil và Mexico that have a culture of siesta, which incorporate “quiet time” in the early afternoon for people to go trang chính for a nap. In such countries, up khổng lồ 72% of people will nap as often as four times per week.

Read more: Forget siestas, "green micro-breaks" could boost work productivity

The perks of napping

Naps are not only beneficial because they make us feel less sleepy và more alert, but because they improve our cognitive functioning, reaction times, short-term memory & even our mood.

The benefits of having a nap are similar to those of drinking coffee. Phokhổng lồ by Jakub Kapusnak on Unsplash

Our retìm kiếm (not yet published) has found those who regularly nap report feeling more alert after a brief nap in the afternoon when compared to those who only nap occasionally.

Another retìm kiếm group found that motor learning, which is where brain pathways change in response lớn learning a new skill, was significantly greater following a brief afternoon nap for regular nappers when compared to lớn non-nappers.

In fact, the overall benefits of naps are similar to lớn those experienced after consuming caffeine (or other stimulant medications) but without the side effects of caffeine dependence and possibly disrupted sleep at night time.

Read more: Health Check: what are "coffee naps" and can they help you power through the day?

How long should a nap be?

The amount of time you spover napping really depends on the time you have available, how you want the nap to work for you, and your plans for the coming night. Generally speaking, the longer a nap is, the longer you will feel rejuvenated after waking.

Long naps of one khổng lồ two hours during the afternoon will mean you are less sleepy (and require less sleep) that night. This could mean it will take longer than usual to fall asleep.

A brief power nap is a great way lớn improve sầu alertness. from shutterstoông xã.com

If you are planning khổng lồ stay up later than usual, or if taking a little longer khổng lồ fall asleep at bedtime is not bothersome, time your nap for about 1.5 hours. This is the length of a normal sleep cycle. You will experience deep sleep for about an hour or so followed by light sleep for the last half an hour.

Waking up during light sleep will leave sầu you feeling refreshed và alert. However, waking during deep sleep will not. If you sleep too long và miss the light sleep at the end of a nap, chances are you will wake up feeling sluggish & drowsy. If you vị experience feeling drowsy after a nap, don’t worry – this feeling is temporary và will go away after a while.

Read more: Want to boost your memory and mood? Take a nap, but keep it short

Another option is to lớn have a brief “power” nap. Brief naps of 10-15 minutes can significantly improve alertness, cognitive performance và mood almost immediately after waking. The benefits typically last for a few hours.

Power nguồn naps are great because you won’t experience any sluggish or drowsy feelings after waking. This is because you vị not enter any deep sleep during this brief time.

Research suggests, a brief, early-to-mid-afternoon nap provides the greatest rejuvenation when compared to lớn naps at any other time of the day. However, if you’re struggling to lớn stay awake, a brief nap taken at any time can be help keep you alert.

Further reading: Did we used to lớn have two sleeps instead of one? Should we again?