While napping is an everyday tradition for some, for many others it is not even an option. Between myths and prejudices, the specialists try that this habit resurfaces in the middle of the bustle of the daily life. Also, they indicate how long is a nap should last and even warn certain cases in which it is contraindicated.
“From our biological clock, we are programmed as humans to sleep naps,” says neurologist Walter Avdaloff, director of the Sleep Institute Neurodiagnostic. Continue reading: Postpartum depression: how to face it?
In this context, the specialist affirmed that the “physiological sleep windows “(moments in which people are more likely to fall asleep) occur twice a day: “at night, around 12 o’clock at night, and in the day, around 2 in the afternoon.”
How long is a nap should be?
Naps are pigeonholed in this second “physiological window” with the aim of “achieving a recovery of energy and rest, to be able to have a long work day in the afternoon.”
However, this option seems to have remained in the past. Formerly, it was sleeping as a completely routine thing, and commerce and even school activities had two days.
Currently, the extension of cities hinders replication of this habit. Unless the offices enable places for this purpose or establish siestas.
Both initiatives have already materialized in some capitals such as Santiago, Paris and even Buenos Aires.
But the siesta is not always beneficial: “If someone is not tired, feels well and wants to sleep by force, it is not advisable.”
It is even contraindicated for some. For example, can impair the night rest of older adults, who often have sleep disorders typical of the age. Such as apneas or restless legs syndrome.
How long is an ideal nap?
“The Wall Street Journal” published an article entitled “The perfect nap” (” The perfect nap “). In which Sara Mednick, assistant professor of psychology at the University of California, said that its optimal duration is directly related to what the person needs.
Each one can find his perfect method among three categories:
1- For quick energy hit: 10 to 20 minutes.
2- To improve cognitive memory (remember data, places, faces): 60 minutes.
3- For creativity and emotional memory: 90 minutes, which is equivalent to a complete sleep cycle.
According to Illene Rosen, the best option ” regarding price-quality ratio” is 10 to 20 minutes.”
On the other hand, for Walter Avdaloff it is a little more. “With 30 or 45 minutes the recovery effect is perfectly achieved “.
On the other hand, an extension of two hours is not recommended as they cause a headache, decay, and the person feels “dull and slow.” But the big question is how to wake up. In this regard, the neurologist recommended setting the alarm. If this is not enough, there are other more creative ways.
One of them is to fall asleep with an object in hand. So that, it falls after a certain number of minutes since the person fell asleep and thus wakes up. Opposed to common sense, it is recommended to have a cup of coffee just before going to sleep. Caffeine will not influence a short break, it will help to diminish the effects of “sleep inertia.” That kind of “drunkenness” that some people feel after napping.
Finally, opting for a semi-sitting position avoids falling into a deep sleep. So, waking up becomes easier. It’s important to know how long is a nap should be.
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