Getting up early in the morning is not an easy task for many people. It is why alarms are important — ensure that you wake up at the time you want in the morning. However, no one can deny how tempting it is to try to squeeze in a few more minutes of sleep.
About 57 percent of people doze off in the morning, defined as needing multiple alarms to wake up. If you set one alarm and snooze it repeatedly, or set multiple alarms at regular intervals until you absolutely need to get up, you are a nap.
Waking up with the first alarm is generally recommended, but does it really make a difference if you’re woken up by one alarm versus several? IN recent a dream studyresearchers study how napping affects an individual’s health and sleep.
Why people snooze their alarm
According to the study, people nap for a variety of reasons. Most of the participants said that they simply could not get up at the first alarm alone. some they say they are napping because they feel comfortable in bed, while others do it because they feel less tired when they get up.
“I think the nap may be a sign that people are waking up.” [up] because of important planned activities — such as school or work — rather than because they have died enough,” said Stephen M. Mattingly, a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Notre Dame who participated in the study.
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Participants wore an activity tracker for the study, which allowed the authors to note that napping was generally associated with lighter sleep in the last hour before waking and a higher resting heart rate during the night.
“Alarms, by definition, are alarming and trigger a stress response,” says Mattingly.
The study found that napping was not necessarily associated with reduced sleep duration, increased sleepiness, or more napping. This suggests that there may not be much difference between waking at the first alarm or subsequent ones when it comes to shorter sleep duration or daytime sleepiness. What may matter more is whether or not you are sleep deprived.
“I don’t like to think about [snoozing] in terms of “bad” or “good,” Mattingly says. “I think the best answer is ‘there may be situations where it’s better than the alternatives.’ I see napping as a possible coping mechanism for not getting enough sleep. Therefore, it is ‘good’ to sleep as much as your body needs.”
The authors recommend further research and gold-standard studies to further understand napping and its effects.
How to avoid fatigue after a nap
A nap feels good because it has that nice feeling of going back to sleep. However, the brain takes time to wake up, and a nap can interrupt that process, leaving you groggy hours later, says Daniel A. Barone, associate medical director of the Weill Cornell Center for Sleep Medicine and author of Let’s talk about sleep.
Read more: What happens when we go without sleep?
“Feeling alert in the morning depends on quality and quantity, so if you don’t feel alert, it could mean you need more sleep,” Barone says. “Or there could be a quality issue, in which case something like sleep apnea could be the culprit.”
It suggests setting an alarm as late as possible and waking up then, allowing you to sleep more.
practicing proper sleep hygiene it can also help people avoid feeling tired and run down. Mattingly recommends creating a comfortable sleep environment, which includes ensuring no light during sleep, establishing regular sleep and wake routines on weekdays and weekends, and exposure to daylight during and after waking.
“The best advice is to get as much sleep as your body needs, which allows the body to avoid feeling dizzy,” adds Mattingly.