The Power of Napping

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A good nap helps you regain the energy you need to get through the rest of the day

One of the best ways to recharge in the middle of the day, even when you are working in the office, is to take a good nap.

Many studies have shown that contrary to negative perceptions about it, napping is beneficial to our health.

Among these benefits include restoring energy and alertness, recovering brain function, boost immunity and relieve stress.

Some researchers also find that naps incorporated into daily routines can help sleep-deprived people in increasing their alertness, work performance, and learning ability.

This is especially applicable for shift workers, considering their work schedule that is unlike a normal ‘9 to 5’ hours. A 2006 study by the Sleep Medicine and Research Centre in the United States discovered that naps, together with caffeine, enhanced alertness and performance among night shift workers.

So how can you get yourself a good nap? Sleep experts suggests taking a nap when your productivity begins to slow, your ability to process information is not as fast as it is in the morning, and your mind is experiencing a ‘fog’ that you are unable to work through.

When these occur, nap for 15 to 30 minutes; beyond that and you might feel groggy as soon as you are awake. The best time to nap is between 1pm to 3pm or an hour or so before an important task to ensure quality sleep later at night.

If possible, find a space where you can nap properly. Ideally, it should be dark, cool and quiet, but the least you can do is to avoid any disruptions by turning off your devices.

If you like your caffeine, have a small amount of it right before your nap. Because it takes about 20 to 30 minutes for it to kick in, the stimulant allows you to wake up with a boost of alertness as you return to your work.

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