If you’re like me, the first thing you think of when the alarm clock goes off in the morning is hitting that snooze button.
I’ll admit it: when the alarm clock goes off, I almost always hit the snooze button at least once.
Sometimes, I’ll hit it a couple of times before I actually get up.
The dog, who likes to sleep at the foot of the bed to be in the path of a fan I have blowing in that direction, has worked out a funny little trick, too. When the alarm first goes off and I hit snooze, he gets up, stretches, then moves up to the head of the bed and lies down next to me with his head on half of my pillow.
(Yes, he has a hard life.)
But sleep scientists say that as good as it may feel to lie back down and get a few more winks, you aren’t doing yourself any favors.
Part of the issue here is that when you hit that snooze and lie back down, your body thinks you’re ready for another full cycle of sleep, and your brain releases chemicals that help you achieve that deep sleep. But that level of sleep takes more than the nine minutes most snooze cycles cover, so the next time the alarm goes off, that deeper sleep is interrupted, making you feel more tired than you were the first time the clock goes off.
One thing I’ve done to battle that nine-minute short sleep cycle is to add a couple of alarms in 30-minute blocks. When I really feel the need for more sleep, I’ll take acknowledge one alarm and sleep until the next one goes off.
The dog likes this more, too, since he gets a longer dose of shut-eye himself.
Do you rely on the snooze button as part of your wake-up routine? Do you feel like it leads to better sleep or worse?
Patrick is a Christian with more than 26 years experience in professional writing, producing and marketing. His professional background also includes social media, reporting for broadcast television and the web, directing, videography and photography. He enjoys getting to know people over coffee and spending time with his dog.