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It’s certainly not an ideal situation to be in, but it does happen. It could be the result of a restless night, work emergency, or long trip. You find that you’ve been awake for far too long, and you only have a few hours before you need to be at work or attending to some other obligation. The question is…

Do you nap or just stay awake?

If you’re tired, it seems intuitive to catch some shut eye. But, we all know that can come with the great risk of heavy grogginess, or falling into a slumber and missing our alarm. On the other hand, you’re just so, so tired…

Well, there are a few things to keep in mind…

Why we sleep

To determine whether or not you should sleep for a few hours or stay awake, it’s important to understand why we sleep.

When we sleep, our body repairs tissues, replenishes hormones, and forms short-term memories into long-term memories. A lack of sleep can have a major impact on how we feel, look, and function cognitively. 

Our sleep cycles through four stages, typically 4-6 times per night, with each stage lasting roughly 90 minutes. 

So, hint-hint – if you nap for 90 minutes, you can catch a full sleep cycle.

Consequences of sleep deprivation

When we’re lacking sleep, things start falling apart. Not literally, but it may start to feel like it at some point.

Experts state that being awake for 18 hours straight has similar effects to having a blood alcohol level of 0.05%. For 24 hours, it’s 0.10%. Being exhausted is much like being drunk. And it only gets worse with time. The longer you stay awake, the worse you’re going to feel.

Symptoms of staying awake can include:

  • Impaired judgement
  • Impaired short-term memory
  • Poor reaction time
  • Poor concentration
  • Increased stress hormones
  • Increased pain
  • Irritability

There’s something called “sleep pressure”, and this fatigue continually builds as you stay awake. 

Hint, hint – even a small amount of sleep can relieve this pressure and reduce the above symptoms. 

Risks of chronic sleep deprivation

Hopefully, this is a scenario you don’t find yourself in often. Sleep is extremely important for overall health. Missing sleep on the regular can have negative consequences for your health, some of which are quite serious.

Risks include:

  • Weakened immune system
  • Obesity
  • Depression
  • Blood sugar issues
  • Low libido
  • Poor fertility
  • Heart complications

Outside of the health consequences, skipping sleep can lead to poor decision making, which can impact several aspects of your life. 

For example, 1 in 6 fatal car accidents involve a sleep deprived driver. 

So, what’s the answer?

Experts recommend getting 7-9 hours of sleep each night. However, sometimes life happens, and you find yourself with only a couple of hours to spare.

Should you grab a quick nap?

The answer is yes. Sleep for as long as you can, but sleep experts advise a nap of 90-110 minutes. This allows your body to go through an entire sleep cycle and can minimize grogginess once you wake up. 

To help with grogginess, be sure to have a glass of water and some nutritious food as well!

Too tired too often?

Though it would be ideal to only be tired occasionally (very, very occasionally), the unfortunate truth is that many of us are tired, well, almost always.

Much of this has to do with restless nights. 

Thankfully, there’s something that can help. Many people swear by CBD as a sleep aid. 

Especially highly absorbable liposomal CBD.

>>> Click here to learn more

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