Napping: Helpful or Harmful?
Napping. Is it actually a helpful way to rejuvenate heavy eyelids, or just a sign of laziness?
Well, depending on your napping habits, it could be either. Napping in and of itself is not a bad thing, but napping too long or at the wrong time can have some serious negative effects.
Knowing about these benefits and detriments can help you make an informed decision about when, where and how you should be napping to maximise your quality of life. And that’s exactly what this list aims to help you do.
Why Should You Nap?
- Napping can increase awareness and performance. Especially in the period directly after the nap.
- Scheduled naps are especially helpful if you have narcolepsy.
- Naps give the psychological benefit of good R&R.
- If you are tired and driving, a 20 minute nap can be life-saving.
- If you are a shift worker, particularly night shift, short naps during the shift can actually be very helpful.
Why Shouldn’t You Nap?
- If you nap for longer than 10-20 minutes, you can awake feeling tired and disoriented rather than alert and refreshed.
- Napping for too long or too late in the day can cause trouble when trying to sleep at night.
- Some studies even suggest that if you are at risk of heart failure, regular napping can increase that risk.
Hopefully this collection of information makes it clear that there are situations where naps can be extremely beneficial; particularly if they are planned and restricted appropriately. But unregulated, lengthy naps can cause a range of issues and can even be a sign of an underlying sleep disorder.
Whether you’re a napper or not, if you have trouble getting to sleep, or getting enough of it, then please talk to your GP, and get in touch with us to find out how we may be able to help.
Sleep Well - Live Well
This blog post is from Keystone Medical Media, a sub-entity of Keystone Content.