I Am Bringing This Back

Tips For Best Sleep in Raleigh

Do you ever just want to take a nap? If you are like me, the answer is a big fat yes. I miss being in kindergarten and stopping in the afternoon and taking a nap.  Oh the joy of that little siesta. But somewhere along the way naps just stopped and became looked down upon as childish and unnecessary.

Well, I am making it my job today to bring back the nap!  Naps, research presented by Daniel Pink in his book When, confers two key benefits: They improve cognitive performance and they boost mental and physical health.  It turns out according to a University of California-Berkeley study, an afternoon nap expands the brain's capacity to learn. Nappers easily outperformed non-nappers on their ability to retain information. Napping may lead to considerable benefits in terms of mood, alertness, and cognitive performance.

Napping also improves our overall health. Napping strengthens our immune system. And one British study found that simply anticipating a nap can reduce blood pressure.

Believe it or not, there is a right way and a wrong way to nap.  Probably the biggest problem with napping is the length of time we nap.   An Australian study published in the journal Sleep, found five minute naps did little to reduce fatigue, increase vigor, or sharpen thinking. But ten to twenty minute naps had positive effects that lasted 3 hours.  Once you went past twenty minutes you begin to pay a price. Ever take a nap and wake up groggy and mean? Well, you took too long a nap and those groggy after-effects are known as sleep inertia in the studies.

Guide To Taking The Perfect Nap in Raleigh NC

  1. Find your afternoon low time. The Mayo Clinic says that the best time for a nap is between 2 pm and 3 pm.  Yours may be different you probably already know when your low time is that is the optimal time for a nap.
  2. Create a peaceful environment. Turn off your phone notifications, find a couch, minimize the light (a pro napper would use an eye mask), and use some earplugs if needed.
  3. Set a timer on your phone for 25 minutes. Remember we are trying to avoid sleep inertia and the groggies.  It generally takes most people about seven minutes to nod off so this amount of time should put you in the sweet spot 10 - 20 minutes to maximize the benefits of the nap.
  4. Repeat consistently. There is some evidence that habitual nappers get more from naps than infrequent nappers but if you can’t do it regularly that is ok as Nike would say Just Do It!

So next time you want to think clearer, improve your health and re-energize your day,  take that glorious twenty-minute siesta and tell your boss, your spouse, or your kids that you are simply following Doctors orders! Together we can bring back the nap!  Who’s with me?

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Ashforth Chiropractic Family Wellness Center
6512 Six Forks Road #103
Raleigh, NC 27615
(919) 844-6560

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