Which is better, studying continuously and depriving your body to take a small rest or having a time for napping once in a while whenever you’re reviewing your notes for the upcoming final examinations? I guess, all of you will choose the first one. That’s what you all really thought all along. That in order for you to pass the semester, you should study real hard — even it will lead into this thing called “Sleeping Deprivation”.
What is Sleeping Deprivation? It is a condition that occurs if you don’t get enough sleep. As what Ann Pietrangelo wrote, “When you’re deprived of sleep, your brain can’t function properly, affecting your cognitive abilities and emotional state. Sleep deprivation leaves the brain exhausted, so it can’t perform its duties well. The most obvious effect is sleepiness. You may find yourself yawning a lot and feeling sluggish. Lack of sleep interferes with your ability to concentrate and learn new things. It can negatively impact both short-term and long-term memory.”
Not everyone is capable of sleeping more than 8 hours a day and if you’re one of those people who are spared to have this kind of privilege, you can still, somehow, regain the remaining time that you weren’t able to fill up because you may either need to wake up early and you’ve already slept past midnight or you weren’t able to sleep early and your body clock tells you to got up earlier that you’re ought to be. There’s a solution for that and that is to “catnap.”
Many of you might not be familiar with this term. According to Dictionary.com, “Catnap is to sleep or doze for a short time or intermittently.” Obviously, it is a combination of the words “cat” and “nap”. You might ask, why is it that they use “cat” and not other animals out there? There’s a scientific explanation for that. As what Jane Kelley stated on catster.com, “cats can get all the rest they need, but they’re still alert enough to awaken at a moment’s notice.” That’s the main reason why they combined those two words, because nap time shouldn’t just about sleeping in a shortest time possible. You should be like those feline animals, even though you’re still in the middle of napping, you should be heedful enough to know the things that might possibly happen around you while you’re savoring the moment of dozing.
You may ask, what is the connection of catnapping and passing the semester. There’s a huge connection between the two. Whenever you wanted to memorize all the notes that you’ve copied all through out the semester, you tend to depend on those capsules that can help you in remembering all the things that you’ve studied the night or the week before. There’s still another way of recalling your lessons and that is to create a spare time for catnapping.
Belle Beth Cooper, a co-founder of Exist, a personal analytics platform to help you track and understand your life, stated on a particular website (fastcompany.com), “Better sleeping is known to provide lots of health benefits. These can include better heart function, hormonal maintenance and cell repair as well as boosting memory and improving cognitive function.” She also added that, “Sleep experts have found that daytime naps can improve many things: increase alertness, boost creativity, reduce stress, improve perception, stamina, motor skills, and accuracy, enhance your sex life, aid in weight loss, reduce the risk of heart attack, brighten your mood and boost memory.”
As what Jennifer Soong wrote on her article for WebMD, “Research shows longer naps help boost memory and enhance creativity. Slow-wave sleep — napping for approximately 30 to 60 minutes — is good for decision-making skills, such as memorizing vocabulary or recalling directions. Getting rapid eye movement or REM sleep, usually 60 to 90 minutes of napping, plays a key role in making new connections in the brain and solving creative problems.” Sleeping or taking a nap while you’re reviewing your notes is a lot better than drinking coffee to keep you awake because as what Sara C. Mednick, PhD, sleep expert and author of Take a Nap! Change Your Life said, “Caffeine can decrease memory performance. So you may feel more wired, but you are also prone to making more mistakes.”
Naps have been shown to benefit the learning process, helping you take in and retain information better. Taking a nap also helps to clear information out of your brain’s temporary storage areas, getting it ready for new information to be absorbed. Dr. Matthew Walker, a lead researcher for a study that’s somehow connected to napping and its possible effects to people, stated that, sleep prepares the brain like a dry sponge, ready to soak up new information. A study from Massachusetts showed how napping can help your brain recover from ‘burnout’ or overload of information. Burnout is a signal that says you can’t take in more information in this part of your brain until you’ve had a chance to sleep.
Brain is slightly parallel to the gadgets that you’re using. If you think that you’ve already overused it, pause for a while and let it cool down first to avoid overheating. The brain also needs to take enough rest to prepare itself from the newest information that will going to be stored hereafter. The brain needs to have a break from all the things that they’re doing to help the body function well, most especially when the final examinations are fast approaching which also means that you’ll be storing more information because of the lessons that you’re memorizing.