Optimize Your Naps

By Jared Minkel, Ph.D.
Reviewed by Susan Ko, Ph.D.
February 24, 2023

For many of us, the idea of taking a good nap in the midafternoon sounds great. But often, in reality, we snooze too long—or too hard—and end up feeling worse than we did before our slumber. Why is that? As a sleep researcher, I can tell you that there's more to napping than you might think.

Who Shouldn't Nap

Napping can be really helpful for some people but a bad idea for others. So, you need to figure out which group you fall into.

Avoid naps if your doctor advises you against them. Napping may be a bad idea for people with certain health conditions like chronic insomnia or migraines. If you already get pretty good sleep at night and feel fine during the day, naps are probably not right for you.