Does a midday nap ruin your night’s sleep?

We all have heard of that one before. Napping for around 15-20 minutes at noon-time can actually refresh us and help us concentrate better on the tasks in hand. Yes, you do love taking that short nap, but you are afraid that you might end up tossing and turning on bed and counting sheep at night.

woman taking a short nap

However you need not worry. Recent research indicates that napping has little effect on sleep onset -- and that a nap today may be beneficial for mental processing tomorrow. Napping did not seem to affect nighttime sleep in any way.

People over age 60 sleep two hours less per night than their younger counterparts. Researches have evidence that a midday nap may improve daytime performance and mood in the elderly and others.

The participants in the study conducted spent several sessions in the sleep lab, attached to scalp electrodes and a wrist activity monitor that recorded their sleep and wakefulness states. They were then asked to perform arithmetic, decision-making and reaction time tests after napping and on the following day.

woman napping The subjects showed improved cognitive performance immediately after a nap and into the next day, when compared with days that didn't include (and weren't preceded by a day with) a nap.

The study also found that napping did have any effect on nighttime sleep.

However the span of your noon time nap should be real short and shouldn't extend for hours. 20 minutes to half an hour is the ideal time-span for your nap. Anything exceeding that is bound to have an effect on your nighttime sleep, at least that's what has happened with me.

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  1. Anonymous10:44 AM

    Concerned that a midday snooze might ruin a good night's sleep? Fret not; ongoing research from New York-Presbyterian Hospital/Weill Cornell Medical Center indicates that napping has little effect on sleep onset -- and that a nap today may be beneficial for mental processing tomorrow.

  2. Timing Is Everything!
    A nap should be about 15 to 30 minutes in duration. If you nap longer than thirty minutes, your body falls into deep sleep, which is difficult to wake from and when you do, you'll feel groggy

  3. Saudarya5:56 PM

    Naps greatly strengthen the ability to pay close attention to details and to make critical decisions

  4. Prabha5:29 PM

    Naps are extremely healthy


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