What is the afternoon slump? How it makes you feel sleepy while working/studying in the afternoon?

If you are a student who has to study most of the time or you are a person with a 9 to 5 job, then you might have noticed that your efficiency level gets down during the afternoon time especially around 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. This case does not just occur with you but most people during this period show the decrease in efficiency and science term this as “Afternoon Slump”.

What is the Afternoon slump and how can we provide this? We are going to provide you with complete knowledge about this below. It is the period when a person's efficiency is lowest during the afternoon.

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What is Circadian rhythm?

In our body, there is a cycle present called the circadian rhythm which regulates all our daily activity related to our body. The hormone responsible for this is Melatonin. This cycle regulates your sleep and awake time. Hence, you start feeling sleepy at your regular time of sleep and also you wake up with a clear mind around your regular wake up time.

What happens during an afternoon slump?

When we sleep at night our melatonin level is very high. This hormone melatonin increases during the night and is responsible for sleep. It reaches its peak from 2 a.m. to 4 a.m., during which we are the least productive. But no one can notice this as most of us are asleep.

The same goes with the hormone cortisol, which increases during morning time and we feel very fresh but during the afternoon its level dips and this causes tiredness and your efficiency dramatically falls off. In most cases, this happens after 7 hours of waking up and from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. After this time the body restores itself and energy bounces off. But as time passes our energy also falls off.

So, we discussed the afternoon slump but this cannot be maintained. So the answer is yes you can both reduce this effect or worsen it.

How can we prepare ourselves for this?

There are so many scientific reports which suggest that you can reduce the effect of the afternoon slump and increase your efficiency.

  • Get a good amount of sleep.

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A night of good sleep is very important for all your work and concentration. Some people might avoid sleep or get less sleep than they require. They do so because they want to give more time to work. But if you get enough sleep maybe your work get a little less time but you have very high energy to perform every task and it reduces this decline inefficiency.

  • Avoid a large amount of carbohydrate food.

You may notice that after you eat a lot to fill your belly, you start feeling drowsy as digestion requires a lot of energy. When you eat so much, most of the blood comes to the digestive system for the purpose of absorption of nutrients and this worsens your condition very much. Hence to avoid this, we should go for alternatives like protein.

  • Take proper breaks during working hours.

  • Most of the time people after starting their work just love to go with the flow. This is a good habit if you can sit for 4-5 hrs without losing your concentration. But many times this is not the ideal case, some people just sit for 4 hrs but not doing their work with full concentration and energy. So, the best way is to take 20-30 min strict breaks in between your work. You can do whatever you want during your break like:-

  1. Go for a short walk outside and interact with nature. Walking makes your heart pump blood and this increases blood flow inside your brain.

  2. Take a power nap- A nap is a very powerful tool for increasing concentration. But a nap must be taken in a proper manner. Keep your naps short. Sometimes people begin with naps and end up with a big sleep!

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