Do you ever hit that mid-afternoon slump at work and wish you could close your eyes for a few minutes?
A Greek design firm, Studio NL, has created a prototype of a “nap desk.” It is a work station where the lower deck is able to function as a single bed. Although it appears as a normal, functioning desk, it features a front panel that slides out, while the side panel folds into an elevated headrest. Studio NL created this desk in 2012, but only recently has interest exploded regarding the matter.
This invention has been inspired by a culmination of studies, including a recent study published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism (JCEM). This study consisted of 11 healthy men that underwent two sleep sessions in a lab.
According to TIME magazine, the first session consisted of two hours of sleep, along with collecting urine and saliva samples to detect any hormonal changes. During the second session, the men still slept for two hours, but also took two 30-minute naps the following day. Once again, saliva and urine samples were collected.
The following results were provided by TIME magazine: “The study found that when men only slept for two hours, they had a 2.5 increase in norepinephrine, a hormone and neurotransmitter which responds to stress. That increase can up the body’s heart rate and blood pressure. The men also had low levels of the protein interleukin-6 which is critical for having a proper immune response.” The men who napped the following day had no changes in their protein or hormonal levels.
Further research published in 2012 reveals that when an individual is sleep-deprived, her awareness and alertness plummets, forgetfulness increases, there are visible signs if she suffers from depression and anxiety, and she has a higher risk of developing cancer.
Due to the highlighted research and other extensive studies, scientists conclude that sleep enhances our ability to perform better. They also explain why starting your workday at 10 a.m. is an appropriate time; it’s due to your body’s circadian rhythms aligning differently, allowing an individual to essentially perform at a greater magnitude with strategic thinking skills.