Thanks a lot, science. We got all excited when we saw a nap-related study, as having a quick snooze is one of our favourite ever activities – but guess what? The best time to take a nap, according to the National Sleep Foundation, is between 2pm and 4pm.
Erm, most of us have to be at our desks during those times? We’re in despair.
According to CNN, the scientific view of napping is changing. ‘At one time we thought naps were bad for sleep and bad for us,’ Natalie Dautovich, of the National Sleep Foundation and Virginia Commonwealth University, said. ‘I think we’re starting to understand [napping is] a much more complex phenomenon.’
Experts are also starting to believe that a nap in the middle of the day could help us overcome the inevitable afternoon slump.
‘Most people experience a dip in energy and alertness in the early to mid-afternoon,’ Dautovich said. ‘Experts aren’t sure exactly why this occurs, although they think it may be built into the natural ebb and flow of your circadian rhythm.’
Finishing a meal can also make you sleepier, which is why 2pm – 4pm, just after lunch, is seen by the experts as the best time to nap.
‘It’s the ideal time to engage in a nap because you’re sleepy, but still far enough away from bedtime that you’ll have the drive to sleep at night,’ said Dautovich. Tips for a great nap from the Foundation include dimming your computer screen, closing your curtains and wearing an eye mask – which we fear would look a tad odd in our 3.30pm meeting.
Well, while this news is great for holidays and weekends, it kind of sucks for weekdays. Maybe we’ll stake out an empty meeting room to have a quick snooze in – or install a pillow at our desks?
Do you like to nap? Let us know @marieclaireuk