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Is Daytime Nap Good for You?

Author: Gud Sleepz Team
Date:

Is Daytime Nap Good for You?

Is Daytime Nap Good for You?

“If you get tired, learn to rest, not to quit” - Irish Proverb


We all love a good nap after a heavy lunch. If it’s weekend, we all crash into our bed without any guilt because we deserve the rest after working the whole week tirelessly.  But have you ever wondered, if that’s going to help you or affect you? We will be looking in detail about the science, benefits and the right period of nap required to reap its benefits. 


Napping is a brief period of sleep usually taken during the day to compensate for the drowsiness during the waking hours. One of the countries, known for its practice of daytime napping is spain. And they call it ‘the siesta’ which is a common practice where they close down business in the mid afternoon hours. And numerous research has been done in understand the usefulness of this practice and the impact on their overall well-being.


There are numerous cultural explanations for the napping practices in Spain but overall it has been shown to increase productivity, improve the quality of life and the overall happiness of an individual. While there is a constant debate on the effectiveness of napping due to which Spain discourages it in recent years while the US workforce recommends as a means to increase one’s overall productivity. Even in the Japanese work culture, taking time out for naps during work hours is seen in a positive light. 


But we need to understand the effects of short vs long naps as longer nap periods are associated with obesity and risk of many chronic health conditions. While a nap less than 30 minutes can actually boost energy, focus and overall productivity. Yet, for people suffering from Insomnia or daytime sleepiness may find it difficult to restrict the nap period due to the increased sleep debt they’ve been carrying. 


This is why we would like to introduce some useful insights and techniques to be able to find a right balance to reap the benefits of the nap without falling into a longer sleep. 


  • Do not overthink it! 


It is as simple as it is. You feel like napping a bit because you believe it can help you focus on your work at hand. Take a nap. Keep an alarm and wake up when you have to. Do not extend it more than 40 to 50 mins. This way you aren’t hard on yourself and you aren’t just thinking about sleep rather you could use that time to sleep and come back to your work at hand. 


  • Practice Sleep Restriction


Sleep restriction is a component on CBT-I (Cognitive behavioral therapy for Insomnia) where you restrict the time you spend in bed or the time you spend sleeping to increase your sleep pressure that night. Or else imagine if you sleep for 5 hours during the day, you can not possibly sleep at night and this can become a cycle and can be frustrating to break. 


  • Make use of accountability 


Tell people about your goals. When you speak about your goals outloud such as restricting sleep for about 40 minutes, your mind registers it and helps you to wake up. You can also ask someone to wake you up and never allow you to sleep for more than 40 minutes. This is a great way to make nap a habit without it interfering with your sleep routine at night. 


  • Do not sleep in a comfortable space: 


If you get too comfortable such as in your cozy bed or having a warm blanket above you with the AC on. It can get really difficult for you to wake up. So always take your nap in a space which will allow you to wake up and where it’s not possible for you to sleep for hours. It can be a pillow on your desk or just a recliner chair or a sofa where it’s not difficult for you to wake up when you need to. 


 

So, to sum up, day naps are actually beneficial for your health but with a caution that it has to be shorter and not meant for compensating for lost sleep at night. It can considered to be an instant energy booster. 


Happy Napping!


Please Book a Session with sleep coach to know more about your sleep.


Tags: day time nap , nap , sleep

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