The covid-19 pandemic altered our work hours, disrupting our sleep. Naps, as they contribute to a well-rested existence, became an obvious remedy to the new sleep troubles.
A nap is a brief period of sleep that is typically taken throughout the day. Naps can also assist many of us in maintaining alertness or overcoming daytime fatigue.
While naps can be beneficial, knowing the facts about napping might help you achieve better naps for a healthy mind. Continue reading to learn about the many advantages of napping as well as how to take a nap.
Benefits of taking naps
If done correctly, naps can improve both your physical and emotional health. Yes, there is a proper technique to nap, which we shall cover further in this blog. Let’s take a look at some of the health benefits of napping.
A snooze allows your brain to function more efficiently, making you feel more alert. A nap, according to one study, lowers the level of adenosine in the brain, which is a neurotransmitter that promotes sleep and plays a role in keeping the mind attentive.
Improves long-term memory
It has been discovered that naps increase memory consolidation, which is the process through which information in the brain is converted into long-term memory.
Furthermore, sleeping aids with perceptual learning, which is the ability to distinguish between distinct inputs. Naps also improve episodic memory, which is the ability to recall specific events or experiences.
Boosts immune system
Regular naps can boost your immune system by improving cellular activity. Naps help reduce the amounts of inflammatory cytokines and norepinephrine, a substance that aids in immune modulation.
Lowers risk of heart disease
Napping has numerous advantages, and one observational study discovered that napping one or two times per week reduces the risk of cardiovascular problems such as heart attack, stroke, or any other heart disease. However, additional research is needed to grasp the complexities of naps in relation to heart disease.
Taking a nap also lessens the consequences of not getting enough sleep. In many circumstances, a nap relieves stress and boosts the immune system in people who slept poorly the night before.
Tips for Getting the Best Nap
Many elements influence sleep results; consequently, crucial factors such as when, where, and how to nap must be considered. Some crucial considerations for a power nap are listed below.
Best duration of a nap
Adults should take naps no longer than 20 minutes and no longer than 30 minutes. A 20-minute nap can allow you to receive some light sleep and increase your alertness without falling asleep. This will also save you from producing grogginess, which would exacerbate your tiredness.
In some situations, though, a lengthier snooze of around an hour and a half may be helpful to your health. This is due to the fact that the length of time permits your body to cycle through the stages of sleep while avoiding deep sleep. A nap of this length may be especially beneficial for shift workers who are trying to avoid weariness.
Best time for a nap
It is recommended that you take a nap for eight hours or more before going to bed as an adult. It indicates that the optimal time for a nap is before 3 p.m. and that resting late in the day can cause trouble sleeping at night.
However, for many of us, naps come naturally or are even required after lunch. As a result, it is also known as a post-lunch slump, because eating lunch contributes significantly to afternoon tiredness.
The after-lunch slump is linked to the circadian rhythm, which is the body’s internal clock that operates on a 24-hour cycle. The biggest peak of tiredness occurs throughout the night, while the second peak occurs in the afternoon during this cycle.
Best place to take a nap
A cold, quiet, and dark environment is ideal for a nap. This is a relaxing nap setting that helps to keep unwelcome disruptions or awakenings at bay.
Furthermore, for people who work from home, a bedroom is usually the greatest place for a quick nap because the environment is already conducive to sleep. You can also add a blackout curtain to filter out distractions, which can be beneficial both at night and during daytime naps.
In an office situation, however, you can utilize accessories such as earplugs or an eye mask to limit interruptions during nap time. Choose a location in the office where interruptions are unlikely to occur. Furthermore, some offices may feature a sleeping area for relaxation.
Set an alarm for desired nap length
Set an alarm before falling asleep during nap time. However, the nap time should not be less than 20 minutes, and if the alarm goes off, do not snooze it to continue sleeping, as this may result in a deeper sleep. You can set a second alarm to go off immediately after the first one to avoid sleeping for too long. Additionally, wake up as soon as your alarm goes off and walk around to avoid any post-nap tiredness.
Consider caffeine before naps
Caffeine before a nap may work for some people because the brain and body feel the effects of caffeine about 30 minutes after consumption. Caffeine consumption before a nap may so boost attentiveness after waking up.
Can we take naps at night?
Yes, taking a nap at night is OK if you work a night shift or have an unusual work schedule. However, keep to the same nap period of 20 minutes and avoid dozing too close to when you get up or when you can fall asleep again.
The easiest strategy is to figure out your shift halfway and take a nap appropriately.
How to wake up after a nap?
Napping for an extended period of time can make you feel drowsy; therefore it is best to set an alarm. Use an alarm that gradually rises in loudness for the best outcomes because it is less likely to startle someone out of sleep.
Furthermore, taking a nap at the same time of day and for the same amount of time will assist your body develop accustomed to waking up.
Taking a nap every other day improves our mental health, makes us more productive, and improves our immunity. Nonetheless, many of us wish to know how to nap for improved health. And the idea is to nap for 20 to 30 minutes at the same time every day. Furthermore, a moderate alarm and caffeine before a nap might help you wake up with vitality.