How can a quick 10 minute power nap re-energize you so much, but sometimes sleeping for 8 hours still leaves you tired?

27 views
0

Always wondered how that worked. Quickly dozing off for 10-15 mins in between work is like a 10 shot espresso coffee. But oftentimes sleeping a full night never really fills up the energy bar

In: 11

It’s all about timing. Sleep pressure builds over time so if you are constantly under sleeping then eight hours miht not catch you up. If you are sleeping most of what you need though and are in little need of sleep a little cat nap might do the trick.

Also, your stress hormones peak in the morning, dip down in the afternoon, rebound, and then wane in the evening allowing you to sleep. In this afternoon dip is where most ppl take that cat nap. If they didn’t sleep they prob would rebound all the same. But once they connect the nap w the rebound, the brain takes over through association and one can feel like crap wo it. It’s a sort of reverse placebo effect.

Sleep happens [in cycles](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sleep_cycle). What cycle you are in when you wake up effects how well rested you feel. The exact purpose and mechanics of sleep is currently frontier science that is still being studied at this point, but a leading idea is that sleep is necessary for your brain to ‘clean house’ as it were.

Lets build upon that analogy. If sleep is cleaning house, taking a 10 minute nap is kind of like doing some light cleaning. You break out some wet wipes and wipe off the the counters. If something interrupts your cleaning and you have to leave, it’s rather easy to put the wipes up and leave the house more orderly than when you started.

What if you don’t expect to be interrupted for a while and therefore have an opportunity to do some much needed deep cleaning. You can break out some heavy equipment and chemicals to wax the floors. But oh no, some emergency comes up right in the middle of you waxing the floors and now you have to leave. There’s liquid wax on the floors still and heavy equipment laying about. Stopping now leaves your house in a much messier state than when you began cleaning. That’s a lot like waking up during deep sleep. You wake up feeling even more tired.

You can avoid this with some practice. Sleep cycles reset roughly every 90 minutes. After which we have a brief moment of wakefulness when we can either get up and start the day or go back to deep sleep. If you find yourself naturally waking up within 90 minutes of your alarm, its often more beneficial to just start your day then and there. It’s almost never beneficial to hit the snooze alarm and then go back to deep sleep only to be jarred back out of it moments later