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Nap time is not just for kids!

I love to nap and Im not afraid to say it.... and here is why you should too!

A short nap during the afternoon is common in many countries and can provide an energy boost, clearer senses and better focus.

Though judged by many as a pastime of the lazy, the need for a nap is a trait that all mammals share and a traditional part of the day in many countries such as the siesta. It is also an effortless way to boost our health and lift our spirits. A nap is relaxing and improves memory, reflexes and even our vision. Lack of sleep, even for just one night, puts stress on the body and mind. It can negatively impact your physical and mental health. And lets be honest if you have small kids like I do lack of sleep is almost par for the course. In the past napping was considered a natural and healthy part of life. Just fifteen minutes of sleep in the middle of the day can leave you feeling happier and more alert. A half-hour long nap can sharpen your senses and replenish your energy reserves, and can help you get through a long day. Napping can help you make up for lost sleep. With more people working from home there is no excuse to make it an essential part of your day.

Feelings of guilt about napping or being preoccupied with other activities can keep you awake when you are trying to take a nap. I find that it helps when I use soft pillows and blankets and play soothing music. There are lots of options on Youtube! Try to take a nap at the same time each day and use an alarm clock to ensure that you don't fall into too deep a sleep. Learning to nap and enjoying its benefits can help you reclaim your natural right to nap. The fact that you are far more productive after a nap should convince even the most dedicated professional on its benefits. So here is a quick list of the benefits so that you can trot them out to anyone who questions your decision to look after yourself by taking that nap break.

1.It improves memory

Studies show that naps play an important role in storing memories. It helps one in taking and retaining information better. It can help you remember things you learnt earlier in the day. Napping prevents one from forgetting skills learnt and solidifies memories.

2.It helps in learning

Taking a nap also helps to clear information out of the brain's temporary storage areas and creates room for new information to be absorbed. When taken regularly, naps improve certain types of learning like the ability to tell the difference between similar things like images and textures.

3.It lifts your mood

If you are not having the best day, try taking a nap. It will lift your spirits. However only take naps for 30 minutes or less. Longer naps may leave you feeling more tired and even sleepier, a condition called sleep inertia. If you take a longer nap, you will require more time to transition back to work which can make you to become grumpy.

4. It helps prepare for a long night ahead

Having travel plans for a night or two means that you won’t be getting enough sleep. You are better off napping ahead of time to prepare than taking several cups of caffeine. Compared to caffeine, napping helps you to have better rest.

5.It helps reduce stress

If you are under pressure, a nap can help alleviate some of that stress. A study found out that people who napped for 45 to 60 minutes had lower blood pressure after going through mental stress. Hence a nap can help your body recover from pressure that causes stress.

6.Naps can help with sleep at night

Taking a nap between one and three in the afternoon may help you sleep better at night especially when combined with moderate exercises like a walk and stretch or yoga in the evening. This is efficient for older adults who struggle with insomnia.

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