Advertisement
Icon WebMD Expert Blogs

Sleep Well

with Michael Breus, PhD, ABSM

This blog has now been retired. We appreciate all of the insights that Dr. Breus has provided to the WebMD community.

Important:

The opinions expressed in WebMD User-generated content areas like communities, review, ratings, or blogs are solely those of the User, who may or may not have... Expand

The opinions expressed in WebMD User-generated content areas like communities, reviews, ratings, or blogs are solely those of the User, who may or may not have medical or scientific training. These opinions do not represent the opinions of WebMD. User-generated content areas are not reviewed by a WebMD physician or any member of the WebMD editorial staff for accuracy, balance, objectivity, or any other reason except for compliance with our Terms and Conditions. Some of these opinions may contain information about treatments or uses of drug products that have not been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. WebMD does not endorse any specific product, service or treatment.

Do not consider WebMD User-generated content as medical advice. Never delay or disregard seeking professional medical advice from your doctor or other qualified healthcare provider because of something you have read on WebMD. You should always speak with your doctor before you start, stop, or change any prescribed part of your care plan or treatment. WebMD understands that reading individual, real-life experiences can be a helpful resource, but it is never a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment from a qualified health care provider. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or dial 911 immediately.

Hide

Sunday, January 15, 2006

Power Naps

Naps. OK, lets talk a bit about naps. I am working on a chapter on naps for my upcoming book and here is what I have learned. There are several schools of thought on napping. First and foremost, if you have problems sleeping at night then do not nap past about 1pm in the day. You need to remember to continue to create a sleep pressure (which is your circadian rhythm and your circadian oscillator) so that when you do lay your head down you will have a good likelihood of falling asleep. However if you are getting 4 hours a night and you are so tired that you are falling asleep at work then you may need to take a 20 minute power nap to just get in enough sleep to make it through the day.

Recent research by Sarah Mednick shows that the true value of naps comes with longer naps – 90-180 minutes. As a society we are all sleep-deprived. There have been numerous studies showing that if allowed even the person who claims to have the best sleep can actually (when out of the sight of time cues) sleep about 1-2 hours longer, but lets get real no one can sleep 10-12 hours a day. We are all just too busy. But we have to respect our sleep and know that there will be times where we need to get more rest and this can be accomplished with napping. Mednick is on the board of a company called MetroNaps. This company furnishes pods where people can come and take a quick nap during work.

So to re-confirm there are a few types of naps out there. There is the 20 min power nap. This one is not too long that you would get into the deep refreshing sleep, but just long enough to get some needed zzzzs. There is the 90-180 min Restorative nap, this is a weekend situation whenever possible. I recommend that people experiment with these types of naps to see when and where they can apply them for a more alert day.

Related Topics: The Power of Napping, Sleep Is More Important Than You Think

Technorati Tags: ,,,

Posted by: Michael Breus, PhD, ABSM at 9:12 pm

Comments

Leave a comment

Subscribe & Stay Informed

Sleep Well

Stop tossing and turning. Get the latest diet and exercise tips, treatments and research about better sleep from WebMD.

Archives

WebMD Health News