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Clin Neurophysiol. 2003 Dec;114(12):2268-78.

The alerting effects of caffeine, bright light and face washing after a short daytime nap.

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Department of Behavioral Sciences, Faculty of Integrated Arts and Sciences, Hiroshima University, 1-7-1, Kagamiyama, Higashi-Hiroshima 739-8521, Japan.



The present study examined whether the combination of a short daytime nap with caffeine, bright light and face washing was effective against mid-afternoon sleepiness.


Ten young healthy adults participated in 5 experimental conditions; those experiments were-Nap only: taking a 20 min nap; Caffeine+Nap: taking 200 mg of caffeine followed by a nap; Nap+Bright-light: being exposed to 2000 lx of bright light for 1 min immediately after napping; Nap+Face-washing: washing their faces immediately after napping; and No-Nap: taking a rest without sleep. These naps were taken at 12:40 hours. The subjects engaged in computer tasks for 15 min before napping and for 1 h after napping.


Caffeine+Nap was the most effective for subjective sleepiness and performance level; its effects lasted throughout 1 h after napping. Nap+Bright-light was comparable with Caffeine+Nap, except for performance level. Nap+Face-washing showed mild and transient effects, however, it suppressed subjective sleepiness immediately after napping.


The effects of a short nap against mid-afternoon sleepiness could be enhanced by combining caffeine intake, exposure to bright light, or face washing.


The present study would provide effective countermeasures against mid-afternoon sleepiness and sleepiness related accidents.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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