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Published: April 29, 2022

Most adults know how much sleep they need to wake up feeling refreshed and ready to face the day. Unfortunately, sometimes we just don’t get quite enough. But is napping a good idea? Well, it depends.

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There’s been a lot of research over the years about sleep; why we need it and why we don’t get enough of it. For some, it just isn’t a priority. Those people have places to be, people to see, things to do. That philosophy can shorten your live dramatically, in more ways than one.

While we’d like to believe that we can catch up on sleep, when it’s more convenient, that’s really not the case. A chronic lack of sleep has a multitude of health impacts, including increased risk for type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, obesity, and depression. A day lounging in bed after a week of skimping doesn’t reduce those risks, and can disrupt your normal sleep patterns even more. But back to napping.

So, there are actually five types of naps. The one we want to talk about is called a recovery nap. A recovery nap is the one you take when you didn’t quite get enough sleep and are starting to feel really drowsy. That’s a dangerous state when you’re using equipment and particularly when you’re driving.

It turns out that a short nap and a strong cup of coffee can alleviate that fatigue, at least for a while, but there are conditions.

Some people find that napping makes them groggier and even a bit disoriented. For those folks, naps aren’t such a good idea, especially when they need to get back to work or back on the road. For others though, it can be a real pick-me-up.

You do have keep a nap short though; 10 to 20 minutes is suggested. Sleep occurs in a cycle of 90 minutes, on average. In the first 20 minutes or so, sleep in lighter, meaning that it’s easier to wake up from, and still has some refreshing benefits. If you sleep longer than 30 minutes though, you’re going to enter a deeper phase, characterized by slower brain waves. Waking during this phase makes pretty much everyone groggy.

So, if your eyelids are drooping and inattention could put you at risk, maybe a nap would be a good thing. Find a quiet place or put in some ear plugs, get comfy, and set an alarm. Tell yourself that you’re taking a break, from your work and your worries, and let yourself drift off.

For more about napping and all things sleep, there are some good articles at sleepfoundation.org.

Stay safe out there!

 

Ameri-Can Logistics Ltd. is a trucking company servicing shipping ports, railroad depots, and communities throughout North America. Operating 24/7/365 with continuous dispatch services, businesses have relied on Ameri-Can to distribute their products to buyers in Canada, the United States, and Mexico, for three decades.

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