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The benefits of micro-napping

Written by Ecommerce Op


Posted on February 08 2021

Today, oscillating between work, transport, family life, our schedules fill up quickly and often cause stress and fatigue. Even more so when the start of the school year is just around the corner! So how can we put our body to rest for a few moments to allow it to recover?
Try micro-napping! Although this is controversial, many scientific studies tout its benefits. Full of benefits, it can improve learning and memory, reduces stress, boosts mood, helps increase productivity, and even helps reduce risk of heart disease.


Benefits of napping

While allowing us to stay alert and to compensate after a short night, it can also have very positive effects on our well-being. Micro-napping improves attention and vigilance capacities and thus reduces the risk of work or road accidents linked to fatigue. Short periods of rest allows the brain to work at full speed during a short sleep, the micro-nap will improve memory by anchoring, more seamlessly,  information seen and learned during the day. Also, by helping us quickly sort and classify the information that saturates our memory, micro-naps limit stress.


How to rest efficiently?

An average sleep cycle lasts 90 minutes, and the best time to wake up is at the end of each one. Conversely, the least suitable time to wake up is after mid-cycle during the deep sleep phase. While a long nap on weekends can be beneficial in offsetting a lack of sleep, too long sleep during the day during the week can disrupt nighttime sleep and cause insomnia. On the other hand, after a complete sleep cycle, it is common to experience "sleep inertia" which is accompanied by a state of confusion and a feeling of greater fatigue than before the nap.


Ideally, the micro-nap should therefore be kept short and not exceed 20 to 30 minutes maximum in order to wake up before the deep sleep phase. Yet those who have tried the micro-nap have often been baffled at first. Indeed, if it is enough to sleep 15 to 20 minutes to feel a beneficial effect, the time it takes to fall asleep can be, through habit, quite long the first few times. To fall asleep quickly, first close your eyes, then breathe deeply and try to relax while relaxing your muscles. Adopting a different position from that used at night can also allow the brain to differentiate the micro-nap from long sleep and thus avoid falling into too deep sleep.


Making it a habit

Due to social or professional constraints, the micro-nap is sometimes used more regularly and is an integral part of sleep habits. By wanting to give themselves more time in the morning or evening without being tired during the day, some people will for example sleep 6 hours at night and take several micro-naps during the day to compensate. In more extreme cases, others sleep only a few hours a night (if at all) and adhere to scrupulous sleep schedules. Be careful, however, if some people say they can hold out by following these techniques, it is strongly recommended not to replace your sleep with micro-naps for a long time and to keep a stable rhythm of 7 to 9 hours of sleep at night (for an adult) in order to be sufficiently rested.