Why a nap can enhance your mental agility
Why a nap can enhance your mental agility

Experts say that a short nap can eliminate confusing thoughts in the brain. Researchers say that people who sleep in the morning at the age of 60 perform better on cognitive tests than those who do not take a nap. Experts say that taking a nap can make the brain rest and clear our daily thoughts, thereby benefiting people of any age. An expert said that the best time for a nap is 1 to 3 in the afternoon, with an interval of 10 to 30 minutes. Another expert warned that a long nap time may indicate that a person is not getting enough sleep at night. The nap sucks. Some people think that taking a nap is a sign of laziness, lack of energy and even illness.
But a new study shows that if you are over 60, your afternoon sleep may sharpen your mind. Researchers say that the elderly who took a nap in the afternoon scored higher on cognitive tests than those who did not. The study, published in the journal General Psychiatry, studied the physical and cognitive health of 2,214 people over 60 years of age living in major cities in China. Among them, 1,534 cases took regular naps and 680 did not take naps.

Observational studies have found that naps scored significantly higher on the Mini Mental State Examination (MMSE), which is a standard screening test for dementia, including visuospatial skills, attention span, problem solving ability, working memory, Assessment of position awareness and oral fluency. Research led by Dr. Sun Lin from the Shanghai Mental Health Center and the Alzheimer's and Related Diseases Center of Shanghai Jiao Tong University showed that children who take a nap perform particularly well in the latter three categories. Sleep has a lot to do with your ability to learn . A nap can help your brain recover from fatigue or information overload. During a nap, your brain will clear unnecessary information from the temporary storage area of ​​your brain, ready to absorb new information.

The benefit is not just in sharp thinking.
The research team (both napers and non-napers) averaged 6.5 hours of sleep per night. A nap is defined as at least 5 consecutive minutes of sleep at any time after lunch, but no more than 2 hours. The naps were asked how often they took naps during a typical week. The response ranged from once a week to once a day. One weakness of the study is that the researchers did not ask the participants how long they took a nap or a specific time of day.

Ideally, a healthy nap should take place between 1 pm and 1 pm, with a duration ranging from 10 to 30 minutes. If you can get a short light sleep in the afternoon, there will be some huge benefits. There is evidence that naps are helpful for improving mood, energy, and productivity, while reducing anxiety and physical and mental tension. A short nap can make you feel alert and ready to cope with the rest of the day without the feeling of "sleep inertia"-you will feel confused, disoriented and impetuous when you wake up. If you can take a long nap (for example, 60 minutes), there is evidence that the nap can actually help you learn. During a longer nap, your brain will begin to transfer memories from your temporary storage device (the hippocampus) to their permanent home cortex.

Not all naps are healthy.
A survey conducted in 2009 by the Pew Research Center found that more than one-third of Americans take a nap every day. Dr. Singh , asleep medicine expert and member of the SleepFoundation.org medical review team, said that although other studies have shown that taking a nap can improve mental agility, it is not clear that taking a nap can prevent cognitive decline with age. Singh said: "Anyone can benefit from a short afternoon nap, especially when the natural circadian rhythm is timed." "It has been shown that a short nap (less than 30 minutes or so) can increase alertness and improve cognition. Ability and improve mood during the rest of the day.” However, longer naps may be problematic, he said. Singh explained: “Two hours indicate that more pathological conditions may be hidden and cause the need to increase siesta.” “If you take frequent naps [more than 1 hour], it may indicate that you have insufficient amount and/or quality of night sleep Many sleep disorders may obscure the quality of your sleep or sleep quality, or even make them lose...Bad sleep habits may also be at work. This is often noticed on screens and bright lights and long working hours. One point." He added. Singh said: "In the elderly, physical conditions and/or the drugs used to treat them can also affect the quality and quantity of sleep." "Certain blood pressure drugs, arthritis drugs, muscle relaxants, and certain mental health drugs may It will have a negative impact on sleep quality." Singh said that more research is needed to determine whether older people need more sleep, including more naps, indicating that the body is trying to compensate for the inflammation associated with cognitive decline and dementia. increase. "Does it cause neurodegenerative changes in sleep/wake disorders (such as dementia), or vice versa?" he said.

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