The majority of sleep experts will advise you to abstain from coffee before going to bed.
However, one neuroscientist asserts that a caffeine dose is a well-kept secret of professional nappers.
Brice Faraut, a researcher at Paris’s Hôtel-Dieu Hospital who studies the effects of sleep deprivation, is familiar with every trick in the book for combating sleep deprivation.
He explains why a cup of coffee and a nap go hand in hand in his new book, Saved by the Siesta.
He asserts that napping is “becoming more culturally acceptable,” and that studies demonstrate that a daily kip is “a highly effective, all-purpose remedy for sleep deprivation.”
“There is scientific evidence that the practise is effective at treating not only extreme fatigue, but also drowsiness, pain, immunological fragility, stress, hypertension, obesity, and cardiovascular disease,” he explained.
According to The Times, Brice says that drinking coffee immediately before a 20 to 30-minute nap will help you overcome grogginess when you wake up.
“Caffeine takes about 20 minutes to kick in and stimulate the brain, which means you will still fall asleep, but following a 20 to 30-minute nap, caffeine will help you wake up more alert for four to six hours,” Brice explained.
“It’s a common trick used by regular nappers.”
Brice’s bizarre approach to a mid-day energy boost, the “caffeine nap,” has been studied, with promising results.
For instance, a Japanese study found that those who took a 15-minute “caffeine nap” performed better on computer tasks than those who took a nap followed by a face wash or exposure to bright light.
Coffee and sleep are not typically associated – if there is one common piece of advice for sleep deprived individuals, it is to avoid caffeine.
While caffeine may help wake you up for immediate tasks, it can further disrupt your sleep pattern by keeping you awake late at night.
According to the Sleep Foundation, it takes approximately four to six hours for the body to break down half of the effects of caffeine, referred to as its “half-life.”
This means that if you have a cup of coffee in the afternoon, it may keep you awake until 10 p.m.
Even if you no longer experience coffee’s “buzz,” its effect on the brain – specifically, its ability to block the sleep-promoting chemical adenosine – may keep you tossing and turning.