It is possible to be awake and alert, but not necessarily mindful. It is also possible to be tired or not attentive, but still mindful, explain the researchers. So-called mindful attention means more than just being awake. For attention control and self-regulation can facilitate sensitivity and adaptive adaptation to environmental influences and internal stimuli, which are essential for effectively dealing with stressful situations.
Sleeping 29 minutes longer at night has a positive effect on attention and thus on well-being and work performance the next day, according to the results of a study involving researchers from the University of South Florida. The study was published in the English language journal “Sleep Health”.
Longer sleep seems to be the key to improving attention, which has many benefits for daily well-being and work performance. To improve attention, just 29 minutes of extra sleep per night is enough.
Differences to previous studies
Longer sleep has advantages for mindfulness
In contrast to previous studies, the current investigation analyzed how several dimensions of nightly sleep affect daily attention or mindfulness, rather than focusing only on sleep quality or sleep duration, the team explains.
It was found that better sleep increases next-day attentiveness and reduces daytime sleepiness.
Mindfulness is important for medical staff
Sleep problems are widespread among medical personnel due to shift work and the psychological strain of dealing with life-threatening illnesses or deaths.
Daily attentiveness was measured using a mindfulness scale and participants also wore an Actiwatch Spectrum device for two weeks during the period of the study, which measured wrist movement activity to quantify sleep and wake patterns.
The current research work focused on nurses, a group of healthcare professionals where high attention is particularly important. The 61 participants were medically monitored for a period of two weeks. Several characteristics of sleep health were examined and participants were asked to answer questions about their attentiveness and sleepiness three times a day for two weeks. One possible answer to the questions was I found it difficult to concentrate on what was happening.
The results of this study suggest that behavioral health intervention strategies are needed for a broader range of people in the health care system to improve sleep and mindfulness, the researchers conclude. Given the link between mindfulness and better care for people in hospitals, improving sleep for people in the health care system could also bring significant benefits for health care. (as)
The researchers conclude that the attentive attention of participants was higher than usual after nights with better sleep quality and longer sleep duration (an additional half hour longer). Mindful awareness was also associated with less sleepiness on the same day, and people with greater mindful awareness were 66 percent less likely to experience symptoms of insomnia during the two-week study period, the research team reported.
WashingtonNewsday Health and Wellness.