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There are two types of naps.

First, there’s the type of nap that turns into a complete snoozefest. You plop down on the couch with the intention of getting back up after a few minutes, but in reality, you end up waking up 2 or 3 hours later, groggy and disoriented after realizing you let yourself slip too far into a deep sleep.

The second type of nap is usually what everyone hopes for. It’s the productive type of nap that’s short and effective, leaving the napper feeling refreshed, alert and ready to take on the rest of the day’s tasks. And unlike the first type of nap, it doesn’t completely throw off your entire sleep schedule at night.

Of course, there certainly are those rare times when a total snoozefest is in order, but most people would probably prefer to use napping as a productivity tool rather than an overindulgence that can turn your day into a waste. Here are 10 tips to keep to help you get the best out of your nap.

1. Don’t even think about taking a nap without setting an alarm.

This really is the golden rule of napping, and it’s the one essential thing you need to do to avoid losing hours of your day to an extended state of unconsciousness. It only takes a few seconds to set an alarm on your laptop or phone to make sure you get up when you should.

2. Set your alarm according to what you want to get out of your nap.

The amount of time you should set for your nap depends on what your goal is. If you’re feeling drowsy and all you want to do is snap out of it, a quick 2- to 5-minute nap might be all you need.

For a bigger boost in alertness, focus, stamina and energy, you’ll need at least 5 to 20 minutes. The typical power nap is about 20 minutes long, which offers the additional benefits of improving your memory and clearing your mind.

3. Don’t lie down in a horizontal position if you plan to avoid slipping into a deep sleep.

You’re more likely to fall into a deep sleep if you nap while lying straight down. If you do plan to nap on a bed or a couch, make sure your head is propped up against the wall, headboard or edge of the couch with a pillow or something soft.

4. Aim to nap after lunch.

There’s a convenient dip in energy that occurs for most people right after lunch that’s ideal for napping—even if you don’t have a typical schedule or didn’t eat lunch. Eating lunch, however, will most certainly make it easier to nap.

5. Eat foods that are rich in calcium or protein an hour or two before you nap.

Certain foods will help you nap better than others. Anything high in calcium or protein will do the trick, so consider adding some yogurt, almonds, oatmeal and other healthy choices to your lunch.

6. Avoid eating foods high in sugar and caffeine an hour or two before you nap.

A sugar high and the jitters won’t help you relax at all. Limit coffee to the morning, and avoid those delicious donuts and pastries throughout the late morning or afternoon if you plan on taking a quality nap at some point.

7. Have a quick cup of coffee immediately before you take a nap.

Everyone knows that caffeine wakes people up, but if you can manage to play with the timing of your caffeine consumption by avoiding it in the hours before you nap and then letting yourself have a cup right before, then you’ll be setting yourself up for a good day. It takes about 20 minutes for the caffeine to hit your brain, which is why this type of “coffee nap” is really one of the most effective ways to feel refreshed after 20 minutes of rest.

8. Throw on a sweater or use a blanket to keep yourself warm.

Your body temperature naturally starts to decrease as you drift to sleep. To avoid being woken up by the discomfort of feeling too cold, cover up with a sweater or a blanket before you settle down for your nap.

9. Shut the blinds or use an eye mask to darken your environment.

Melatonin, the hormone that promotes sleep, is stimulated by a dark environment. If you can’t control the amount of light coming into the room by closing the curtains or shutting the blinds, place something like an eye mask, a scarf or some other piece of fabric over your eyes to keep it dark.

10. Use earplugs or headphones with optional relaxing music to promote quietness.

You’re going to have a hard time napping if there are lots of loud and abrupt noises occurring in the background, which is easily solvable with a regular pair of earplugs. You could even grab a pair of headphones to listen to some soothing ambient music, nature sounds or white noise at a moderately set volume.

SOURCE: http://www.care2.com/greenliving/10-of-the-most-productive-ways-to-take-a-nap.html

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Practice Policy Update Regarding COVID-19

Dear Patients:

Our patients, employees and family are our top priority at Long Island Spine Specialists, P.C.

We ask you to not visit any of our locations if you have symptoms such as fever, sneezing, coughing and possible shortness of breath.

Please cancel your appointment and re-schedule once you are feeling better and are no longer suffering with symptoms.

Only non-symptomatic patients will be seen. No exceptions.

Accompanying family members – including children – are asked to remain in the waiting area and will not be allowed to enter the exam rooms.

During this time of high concern regarding the spread of COVID-19 (Coronavirus) we are taking extra precautions to maintain the highest possible standards of safety and cleanliness. Please be advised that we are carefully following recommendations from both the CDC and WHO and are here to help guide you through this time if needed.

Some steps we are taking to keeping safe:

  1. We know how important cleanliness is and always maintain the highest standards of cleanliness. To further offer you peace of mind, we have increased the frequency of the cleaning of our office.
  2. Rest assured that hand washing is strictly followed. Hand sanitizer is available to all staff and patients.
  3. Additionally, if you have recently traveled to a country with high rates of the coronavirus or have been on a cruise, please reschedule your visit for at least 14 days from your return date. We will gladly accommodate your needs to reschedule. At that time, a telehealth interface can be arranged if necessary.

Find up-to-date and accurate information on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website and feel free to reach out with questions.

- Your team at Long Island Spine Specialists, P.C.

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To best serve your individual needs, please choose from the following options:

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To learn more about Long Island Spine Specialists – and to discover how we can relieve your pain and help you find an improved quality of life – please contact our office today and schedule a consultation.

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