Many people love to take naps in the middle of the afternoon as a way of relaxing or because you didn’t get enough sleep the previous night. As napping becomes more and more popular, it’s being encouraged because it’s said to increase productivity.
Depending on the length of your nap, you can at times wake up feeling more alert than before and other times if you take a long nap it can leave you feeling groggy. Napping can eat into your sleeping time. According to research, taking a 60-90 minute siesta can help to recharge your brain’s batteries the same way you would have an 8 hours sleep during the night. Daytime napping has been found to have very many benefits. From increasing your alertness and helping in weight loss to reducing your risk of heart attack and diabetes.
To increase the quality of your nap time, creating the right ambiance is important just the same way you would when you sleep at night. If possible your napping room should be dark and quiet. And if you can nap on a bed the better, but if not get a comfortable lounge chair. A comfortable mattress from mattress warehouse will support your body and spine so that you wake up feeling rejuvenated with no aches and pains. The temperature in the room also has to be cool. All these elements contribute to deeper and better nap time.
Types of naps
This is a short 25 minutes nap during mid-afternoon to help boost your energy, focus, and mental performance. The best time is between 1 pm and 3 pm. If you want to have a fresh take on a task or get through the day, a short nap will do the trick.
Also called a coffee nap, it involves taking a 20-minute nap immediately after drinking a cup of coffee. It takes caffeine a few minutes to enter your bloodstream, so by the time you drink coffee then take a 20-minute nap, the caffeine will have taken its effect. This will boost your energy levels and leave you feeling well rested.
If you’re planning on having a late night, you can take a 90-minute nap before heading out for the evening. This is a nap you use occasionally that is very effective in boosting your energy and stamina that you will need for the night ahead.
Shift work nap
Shift work doesn’t have your traditional working schedule. This is quite challenging for your health because your body is awake and active when it’s supposed to be sleeping. This poses a risk on your health increasing your risk of fatigue which can cause accidents and injuries at work. Schedule naps during your breaks or two 90 minute naps during your shifts can help you.
Many people like to take naps after their lunch to help them recharge. Some workplaces even allow their employees to take a few minutes to rest during the afternoon. Try getting a 20-minute nap to relax your tense muscles.
Jet lag nap
Your sleeping schedule can be affected if you’re traveling across different time zones. Taking a nap during your flight is one of the best ways of adjusting to this time shift. This allows you to reach your destination feeling refreshed and ready for the day.
Benefits of napping
Improves your mood
When a child doesn’t nap during the day, they become cranky in the evening and the same goes with adults who don’t get enough sleep. Lack of enough sleep creates a hormonal imbalance that contributes to you being irritable and tired. Taking a 20-30 minute power nap will help restore this balance which is the same as when you’ve had a good night sleep.
Boosts your immune system
If you don’t sleep well, it prevents your immune system from functioning properly. Taking a nap can help boost your immune system functions. A nap combined with 8-hours of sleep will increase the white blood cells in your body to help your body fight diseases, tissue and skin regeneration to give you youthful skin.
Sharpens your sensory perception
When you need to sleep your eyes feel tired and your ears become more sensitive to noise. When you’re asleep your brain is able to strengthen and form new neural connections which help in the development of your sensory skills. Taking a midday nap can help in removing any distracting sensory information that is bombarding your brain.
Enhance your creativity
Just like a computer needs a reboot when it’s not working to clear all the clutter and help it function properly, the same way your brain needs a nap to find solutions and get new ideas. Taking long naps that help you enter the REM stage in your sleep can help you get creative ways of solving problems.
Help you with weight loss
Feeling sluggish during the day because you didn’t get a good night sleep can lead you to make poor food decisions, especially if your body requires an energy boost. The most likely food you will go for is unhealthy sugary foods and drinks, which contribute to your increase in weight. But if you take a nap, you can stop feeding your cravings and it also helps to regulate your hunger and appetite.
Reduces your stress
Increased blood pressure and high levels of cortisol, the stress hormone, is linked with poor sleep. Daily naps can reduce your stress hormone levels in your body, stress, and your risk of heart disease and diabetes. Get a boost in your health by scheduling regular naps after lunch when your blood sugar and energy levels are low to help your brain rest and give your body a chance to heal and repair.
Sleeping on your desk isn’t a good way of earning respect at your workplace which makes it hard to get some shuteye at work. But if you get an hour for your lunch break, you can eat in 30 minutes and use the rest for taking a nap in your car or find a comfortable lounge chair in a back office at work. You only need 20 minutes every day to enjoy all the above nap benefits.
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