Everyone enjoys a great catnap, midday doze, or afternoon siesta. At some point sleeping during the day is good in order to recharge the batteries. However, individuals should always bear in mind that their napping habits could be making them even sleepier. In order for napping to function properly, it is vital that persons understand the impact napping could have on sleep. It could also affect their mental health. In this way, they can be certain that they are consistently reaping the benefits of the additional dozing.
The Benefits Of Napping
A nap is considered a light, short sleep that is taken during the hours of the day, typically between noon and 2 pm. It should not be anywhere close to bedtime. As stated by the Pew Research Center, nearly one-third of all adults in the United States frequently take naps. Numerous studies discovered that taking a nap could improve fatigue, sleepiness, alertness, logical reasoning, vigilance, and reaction time. The main incentive for several individuals to nap is to regain energy and be less tired. Other than being restored there are other advantages of napping which include, improving memory and learning ability. It also increases positivity and tolerance to frustration, plus it lowers blood pressure.
Naps & Sleep Patterns
Even though napping has a range of benefits, it could be too long. This could lead to sleep issues and a disturbance in sleep patterns. Napping could also result in making individuals feel more sleep-deprived, groggy, and tired. Lengthier naps which are more than forty-five minutes could interrupt the natural sleep drive. This makes it more difficult to fall asleep during the night. A dangerous cycle of being sleep-deprived and napping for longer times in the day could develop. This perpetuated cycle could result in long-term issues.
Types Of Naps
The length of time napping plays a significant role in how individuals feel when they are awake. Shorter naps could leave the individual feeling restored and refreshed. Longer naps could contribute to the individual feeling groggier and sleepier.
Napping for a short period of time is also referred to as power naps. This is roughly twenty to twenty-five minutes long. They are excellent for feeling re-energized and rested. Short naps might assist in improving athletic performance, information and memory retention, perceptual learning, and cognition. As individuals are in that twenty to twenty-five minutes, they are staying in light sleep.
Light sleep is great to wake up from as individuals feel quite attentive. It is crucial to set an alarm in order to ensure that individuals do not sleep for much longer. In the event that individuals do not fall asleep, it only means that they are not that tired. Therefore, simply be aware, actually falling asleep is not a requirement in order to attain the effect.
This is considered a nap which begins with consuming a cup of espresso, tea, or coffee. The next thing is to immediately slip into nap mode for roughly twenty to twenty-five minutes. Hopefully, by the time the individual awakes from their rest, the caffeine would be kicking in. This way they would be supercharged and ready to go, having that additional boost of energy and alertness.
According to a study, caffeine functions by blocking adenosine, which is a compound that accumulates during the day and encourages sleepiness. Caffeine blocks the receptors for adenosine in the brain in order to prevent the feeling of being tired.
As it relates to napping, individuals should not drop into a deep sleep, as this typically occurs after twenty-five minutes of sleeping. This groggy, heavy feeling that occurs is caused by sleep inertia. It is the transitional state between wake and sleep. It is proven to make individuals feel less rested and more tired, it reduces vigilance and impairs performance. Sleep inertia has the ability to last for hours, therefore it is critical to remain in a light sleep.
What is more, is that a study conducted on the relationship between napping and nighttime sleep in students revealed this. Those that reported regular, long, late napping habits, had a greater risk of developing poor sleep quality during the night. It also increased serious sleep deprivation. In the event that after a nap, the individual is feeling sleepier, the chances are they slept for too long.
Time Of Day
The optimal time for a nap is considered to be in the afternoon between the hours of 12 pm and 2 pm. However, this is true for individuals on a normal 9 to 5 schedule. This might be different from someone operating on a shift system or that works at night.
The need to take a nap during the morning could signal sleep deprivation. The yearning for a midday nap that is in excess of one hour might indicate qualitative or quantitative sleep deprivation. If an individual wants to nap longer during the day on a frequent basis, consult their health care provider. It could be an underlying sleep disorder, like insomnia or obstructive sleep apnea. These could impact the quantity and quality of sleep.