The snooze button has gotten a bad rap over the years — but a new study published in the Journal of Sleep Research suggests that snoozing doesn’t always mean losing.
Researchers from Stockholm University in Sweden found that stealing that extra few minutes of sleep could actually support the waking process.
Participants were evaluated in two separate studies, according to a press release from the university.
In the first study, 1,732 individuals answered questions about their morning wake routines.
Many of them reported using the snooze button, mainly because they were too tired to wake up right away.
In a follow-up study, 31 people who regularly used the snooze button were analyzed in a sleep lab for two nights.
On one of the mornings, they were allowed to snooze for 30 minutes.
On the other morning, they had to get up right away.
On the mornings when they snoozed, the participants performed better on cognitive tests.
They also showed no negative effects on their mood, sleepiness or cortisol (stress) levels.
“The key takeaway is that snoozing for 30 minutes in the morning doesn’t seem detrimental for your sleep or how tired you feel when waking up,” lead study author Tina Sundelin, a researcher at Stockholm University, told Fox News Digital.
The researchers also noticed a “decreased likelihood of waking from deep sleep” in the snoozers, Sundelin noted.
“When participants were allowed to snooze, they were also a bit more quick-thinking right when they got up.”
“Considering the commonly held opinion that snoozing is bad for you, I was surprised to find that the effects on sleep were so small, and that there was even a small benefit to cognitive functioning upon waking,” Sundelin added.
The study did have some limitations. For instance, it only included people who are regular snoozers and already find it easy to go back to sleep after each alarm.
“There were 31 participants in the experimental study, and we only looked at one night of snoozing compared to one night of not snoozing,” Sundelin told Fox News Digital.
“It would be really interesting to study a larger group of people over a longer time period.”
Additionally, the over 1,700 people who responded to an initial questionnaire about their waking habits were not representative of a particular population, Sundelin noted — so the researchers could not draw conclusions about how common snoozing is, only that many people wake up this way.
The snooze button has been around since 1956, when General Electric-Telechron released its “Snooz-Alarm,” which offered roughly 10 minutes of extra sleep with the tap of the bar on top.
In a 2022 study by the University of Notre Dame, researchers found that those who used the snooze function were less active during the day and “experienced more disturbances” while sleeping, according to a press release.
However, the snoozers did not report feeling tired more often, nor did they take more naps than the non-snoozers.
“There may be cases when hitting the snooze button is actually beneficial,” aid Stephen Mattingly, lead author of the study, in the press release.
“If you snooze and you’re more alert when you get behind the wheel to go to work, that might be a benefit and a useful one. If it reduces dependence on caffeine, that’s another.”