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Good morning: Don't touch that snooze

Wednesday - 10/30/2013, 9:40am  ET

snooze.jpg
Those extra few minutes of sleep might be keeping you tired. (Thinkstock)

One morning habit could be ruining your day

WTOP's Mike Murillo reports.

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WASHINGTON - Do you find yourself groggy and tired all day long?

Casey N. Cep, a Maryland native who wrote recently for Pacific Standard magazine, says the snooze button is the root of all evil.

"It's one of the most deliberate ways we sabotage our lives," says Cep, who decided to study the morning killer found on every alarm clock.

Cep says for thousands of years before the invention of the snooze button, people woke up more rested and were more productive during the day. Then in 1956, General Electric released an alarm clock with the snooze bar, presenting us the button that takes a toll on our day.

"When your alarm clock first goes off in the morning, your body releases hormones like adrenaline and cortisol which are supposed to wake you up," she says. But instead we sabotage those by hitting the snooze.

She says the body is fooled into going back to sleep and then we pay for the trickery all day long.

It only takes the body is 20 to 30 minutes to get into a deep sleep, but most snooze buttons only delay those infamous chimes by 9 minutes.

"So, 9 minutes is nothing, you just ultimately confuse your body. It gets groggy and it thinks it is gonna get sleep and it doesn't," she says.

"If you think about how you felt on a day when you simply get out of bed on the first alarm versus the day that you snooze and snooze and snooze, not only are you mad at yourself for losing that time, you're no more well rested," Cep says.

Cep admits she is addicted to the evil button, as well, but recommends trying to get up the first time the alarm goes off.

If that doesn't work, perhaps going to bed earlier is a better option, or even setting a second alarm.

Read more from Cep about snooze buttons at Pacific Standard magazine.

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