Modern man, in pursuit of the benefits of civilization, wants to do more, and he often “takes away” the hours assigned to him from a night’s rest. Eight or nine hours of sleep has already become expensive, so more and more people are looking for ways to cheer up after a lack of sleep. Many of them are nothing more than myths. The head of the sleep laboratory of the central clinical hospital of the Administration of the President of the Russian Federation Kalinkin Alexander Leonidovich undertook to debunk them.
A cup of coffee, a short nap and you’re back in the ranks
This advice is a real know-how that has made a splash among those who have trouble waking up. It consists in drinking a cup of coffee immediately after waking up and going back to bed, setting the alarm for 20 minutes. Allegedly, it is precisely this period of time that caffeine needs to activate its activity, and after the phase of REM sleep, for which 20 minutes are allotted, you will feel a surge of strength and good spirits. Alexander Kalinkin refutes this claim on the simple grounds that REM sleep takes 60 to 90 minutes to begin. And neurologist Olga Skrypnik claims that coffee is absorbed by the blood much faster and will interfere with proper rest. In addition, the drink increases the load on the heart muscle and increases blood flow in the kidneys, so you should not drink it often.
Sleep after a hearty meal
Another myth? But no, it’s a fact. Those who allow themselves a little nap in the afternoon are doing the right thing, because this leads to an increase in tone and subsequent productivity. Franz Holberg, who is called the father of American chronobiology, conducted various studies on this topic for many years and found out that the time for sleep for us comes twice a day — in the middle of the night and in the middle of the day. This feature of the functioning of the human body is due to various factors — the production of hormones that affect circadian activity, changes in body temperature and other biochemical processes.
However, according to Kalinkin, the daily need for daytime rest is not the norm. It may indicate chronic sleep deprivation, disturbances in night rest, and in this case, steps must be taken to restore it.
Bright light after sleep
The human body is highly susceptible to the change of day and night and “knows” to go to bed after dark. This is the ideal time for sleep, because in the absence of light in the body, the production of the hormone melatonin, which is responsible for falling asleep as soon as possible, starts. In the evening, its level begins to rise, and with the advent of the morning it sharply declines. Therefore, it is not surprising that in gloomy rainy weather drowsiness piles up on us, and residents of the northern latitudes often suffer from seasonal depression associated with sleep disturbance. Therefore, everyone who wants to wake up as soon as possible should open the curtains in the room or turn on the light immediately after sleep.
Uncomfortable position — a hindrance to sleep
Another popular method of waking up sooner is related to the adoption of an uncomfortable position. On the Internet, you can find advice to sit on a hard chair, lean against a wall, or take an intricate gymnastic pose, but all this, according to Alexander Kalinkin, will do little to cheer you up. He says that in somnology there is such a thing as sleep pressure. With chronic lack of sleep or a long absence of proper rest, a person can fall asleep in the most inappropriate position, which can often be observed in everyday life. Therefore, this method is nothing but a myth.
You can delay the onset of bedtime if you eat less
This method has a direct relationship with the above recommendation to sleep after dinner. But you’ll be tempted to do it even more often if you eat hearty, high-calorie foods, much less overeat. A busy digestive tract will force the body to spend all its energy on digesting food rather than doing other daily activities, which will lead to fatigue and, as a result, drowsiness. Therefore, you should not have a heavy breakfast immediately after sleep, and during the day try to eat more often, but little by little and drink more fluids if you want to have more time.
Influence biologically active points — give yourself a massage
This is also not a myth, but a fact, which is confirmed by the specialist of the clinic of oriental medicine Choi Yong Jun. According to him, stimulating acupuncture points activates the movement of energy in the body, accelerates the flow of blood and fluid, eliminates muscle spasms and promotes enlightenment of the mind and awakening. Therefore, immediately after the end of sleep, it is recommended to do yourself a light self-massage, which consists in:
active rubbing of the ears and nose;
high-quality study of the temple area;
vigorous rubbing of the palms and feet;
performing pressure in the area of the inner border of the clavicle — the location of the biologically active point of the lungs and heart;
stimulating a point called “bai-hui”, which is located on the crown.
Intimacy is the best start to the day according to sexologists
Not everyone likes to drive away sleep in this way, but in vain, says Elena Belova, a sexologist. When making love, the production of hormones of joy and happiness, oxytocin and serotonin, increases, which affects the body more than any alarm clock. Intimacy in the morning provides a powerful boost of energy and gives vigor, improves mood. Therefore, it is worth welcoming the attempts of the second half to reduce sleep time in this way and help you not only wake up faster, but also do it in a great mood.
Smart gadgets to guard your good morning
Demand creates supply, and if earlier we could only interrupt the alarm clock set for one specific time, today numerous devices and applications come to our aid. They are able to calculate the onset and change of all phases of sleep and thus determine the time when we are most ready to wake up. However, don’t rely heavily on all these newfangled gadgets. Only the calculation principle underlying the definition of sleep phases will not give the whole picture, since this requires a lot of other measurements. It is unlikely that someone wants to hang their body with sensors before a night’s rest, so this method will fail.