Skip to content, navigation or search.

Find a Cure

Search our online library:

Find a Doc

Find a doctor who practices alternative, natural or complementary medicine in your state! Click here to get started.

If your brain needs a nap, it will take a nap, with or without you

I think most of us have been there…

You’re on a long car trip. You find yourself nodding off into mini-blackouts. That’s your brain overriding your decision to drive too many miles without enough sleep.

In a recent test, researchers explored the link between brain fog and sleep deprivation. They kept rats awake and stimulated for extended periods

Brain activity showed that tiny clusters of brain neurons occasionally shut down.

It’s the ultimate power nap — napping while awake.

These isolated neuron cluster naps caused the rats to make errors and become forgetful. That’s much the same way we experience frightening two-second blackouts while driving.

Those nods are a clear message that it’s time to pull over and rest. If you’re in need of a nap, your brain will find a way. Even if you don’t.

“Tiny clumps of neurons doze off, even while the brain as a whole is awake” Valerie Ross, Discover Magazine, April 2011,

Get urgent health alerts, warnings and insights delivered straight to your inbox

Health Disclaimer! The information provided on this site should not be construed as personal medical advice or instruction. No action should be taken based solely on the contents of this site. Readers should consult appropriate health professionals on any matter relating to their health and well-being. The information and opinions provided here are believed to be accurate and sound, based on the best judgment available to the authors, but readers who fail to consult appropriate health authorities assume the risk of any injuries. The publisher is not responsible for errors or omissions.