Different Nap Lengths and Their Benefits

Posted by Darian Dozier on Dec 11, 2021 8:00:00 AM

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Nothing feels better than that midday siesta. However, napping can either go really well, or go really bad. If you nap for the perfect amount of time, then you can wake up feeling refreshed, refocused, and re-energized. However, sleep too long, and you will be groggy and potentially mess up your sleep schedule. Keep reading to find out how you can properly take a beneficial nap and still keep your sleep schedule. 

Power Nap (10-20 minutes) 

It may not seem possible that 10-20 minutes of sleep can get the job done, but it can. 10-20 minutes is the perfect amount of sleep to jolt you awake. If you need a quick burst of energy, a power nap can decrease fatigue, much like an energy drink or a coffee. Set your alarm and pop yourself up.

Groggy Nap (30-60 minutes) 

Once you hit the 30 minute mark, you hit the groggy mark. This means that when you wake up you will feel super groggy and have a hard time getting up. Your body is still in this state of rest, and your brain is not fully awake yet. 

However, this length of nap is super beneficial for a few reasons. Thirty to sixty minutes helps you with remember facts, places you've been, names and faces. The only drawback is the sleep inertia (or the grogginess). 

REM Nap (90 minutes)

REM nap is the perfect length for a long term nap. It allows you to go through a full cycle so you wake up you don't have that groggy feeling. REM sleep is perfect for improving creativity and emotional or procedural memory, like learning a new skill. 

The best time to have a REM nap is between 1pm and 4pm so you don't disrupt your sleeping schedule and can get good sleep at night. 

Tips for napping during the day

If you would like to nap during the day to sort of reset, here are a few helpful tips: 

  • Keep it short by sticking to either a 20 or 90-minute nap. 
  • Set an alarm so you don't oversleep. As soon as your alarm goes off, start waking up and don't go back to sleep. 
  • Sleep during the early afternoon. 
  • Pick a comfortable environment so you can doze off quickly for high quality sleep. 

Benefits of Napping 

Naps are beneficial for a myriad of reasons. First, naps ma help to reduce stress. Since a majority of adults are not getting enough sleep, naps can help to curb that and give a little extra time. This can reduce feelings of stress and anxiety or depression related to a lack of sleep. 

Naps can also sharpen your cognitive skills. it can improve your mind's ability to focus and store more information. Naps can also improve your mood. When you're tired, you may be more irritable, but when you're well rested, you can have an improved mood which can increase your energy and productivity. 

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