15-minute nap can make difference, expert says

Prodita Sabarini ,  The Jakarta Post ,  Jakarta   |  Fri, 08/14/2009 2:10 PM  |  Headlines

Taking a 15-minute nap during the day can restore one’s energy and increase concentration, a sleep specialist says.

Sleep specialist Andreas Prasadja said Thursday that people in Indonesia were unaware of the importance of getting a good night’s sleep and how to make up for a lack of sleep, meaning many people feel tired unnecessarily.

Sleep deprivation can be caused by difficulties in falling asleep and insomnia to bad quality sleep due to sleep apnea, he said.

One of way to restore one’s energy is to take a short nap during the day, Andreas said. “One can take a nap at their desk or in their car. In Jakarta, people take at least an hour traveling anyway,” he said.

He said Indonesians still associate sleep or being sleepy as a sign of laziness. “Feeling sleepy during the day time or feeling tired can actually be the result of a sleep disorder.”

He added that sleep disorders can be dangerous. “Sleep apnea can be a silent killer,” he said.

Andreas was speaking at the launching of his book Ayo Bangun! (Wake Up!), about healthy sleeping habits, and the relaunch of Mitra Kemayoran’s Hospital Sleep Disorder Clinic.

The clinic, which opened in 2002, is the first of its kind in the country. Andreas is one of only two Indonesia’s sleep specialists.

“Most cities abroad have at least one sleep center, but in Indonesia the awareness among both the public and the medical community about sleep is still low,” he said.

He said a US study showed that one out of five Americans have a sleep disorder, but added that there has yet to be a similar study conducted among Indonesians. However, he said that the rate of sleep disorders was likely higher than that in the US.

He said that a common misconception in Indonesia is that people who snore sleep well. He said that if left untreated, snoring can cause hypertension, heart failure, diabetes or stroke.

Snoring is a type of sleep disorder clinically known as Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA).

“When people snore, their respiration tract gets clogged, due to the relaxing of muscles during sleep, and this makes them stop breathing. As a reflex the brain wake them up, often gasping for air. This means people who snore wake up continuously at night even though they might not be entirely conscious,” he said.

link: http://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2009/08/14/15minute-nap-can-make-difference-expert-says.html