How Can Taking Naps be Beneficial?

Lucy McIntire

While taking naps may have a negative connotation in our society and is often times associated with laziness, napping can actually be very beneficial, having numerous positives from boosts in productivity to overall health. And with the added stress of the pandemic, a good nap is always a great idea!
There are also several other reasons that taking naps — especially now — is beneficial. For one, with the spring daylight savings time and a leap forwards, we just lost an hour of sleep. In fact, national napping day was created in inspiration of the spring leap forwards as a way to encourage people to maintain a well-rested state. A short nap can also make you more alert for the rest of the day.
With 30.3 million U.S. adults diagnosed with heart disease in 2018 and about¬†647,000¬†Americans dying from heart disease a year, any type of prevention is helpful — and napping can be this prevention.¬† According to a 2019 study published in the journal Heart, taking naps a couple times a week could reduce the risk of heart attacks and strokes.
People who are sleep deprived also tend to overeat and consume more foods with added sugar, fats, and caffeine. This is also true if you do not achieve quality sleep, which napping can aid with as well. Quality sleep occurs when you fall to sleep within a half hour and stay asleep, waking up no more than once per night. Low-quality sleep is often caused by using screens including phones and computers right before falling asleep.
Getting quality sleep and napping can also help boost creativity in schools and workplaces. Be careful, however, as naps longer than 45 minutes can actually have negative effects, making it more difficult to fall asleep at night.