DnD 5e Short Rest Explained

Good afternoon folks, hope you’re all having a lovely Sunday. In today’s post, DnD 5e Short Rest, I’m going to be talking about the mechanic in the game known as short rests. This mechanic allows you to regain health and also for some classes, regain uses of spells.

So get cozy, and get ready to dive into the post.

Short Rests

Within DnD 5e there are two main ways to recover a lot of health and class resources. One is the long rest, where you effectively sleep for 8 hours (can be a longer period of time using other rules), or a short rest, where you take a bit of a breather, and lick your wounds.

Short resting is useful for when you need to regain some health, and not waste a whole lot of time. The party will need to find an area of relative safety where they can be uninterrupted for at least an hour.

When you take a short rest, you may use your hit dice (the number of hit dice you have is equal to your level) to regain health. The amount regained is determined by whatever hit dice you have as your class, plus your Con modifier. You can see what hit dice you roll as part of your class section in the player’s handbook or appropriate book that contains your class info. You can also spend any number of hit dice during a short rest.

Some hit dice are regained upon a long rest; half the character’s total hit dice are regained after a long rest.

Some classes also regain spell slots and features upon a short rest, so make sure you keep note of this when you’re reading over your class abilities. For instance, a Fighter will regain their Second Wind ability after a short rest.

Some magical items will also regain their ability to be used upon a short rest. Usually, these are less powerful effects, but knowing what you regain upon a short rest is very useful. You want to be fighting as close to your full strength as possible. Also, as a GM, it’s unlikely I’m going to be tracking this, so please do remember to track this.

Question Time

Is there a limit on short rests 5e?

No. Technically the only limit is the amount of hours in a day.

Can you cast spells during a short rest 5e?

Yeah, you can. It has no effect on the short rest, unlike long rest that would be interrupted for doing so.

Can you maintain concentration through a short rest 5e?

You sure can. Just like casting a spell, this won’t mess up your short rest.

What do you do in a short rest 5e?

From the rules itself (From the official SRD)

A short rest is a period of downtime, at least 1 hour long, during which a character does nothing more strenuous than eating, drinking, reading, and tending to wounds.


Another quick and simple post on a topic that I actually find I get asked about a fair bit. So I hope it helped you understand this mechanic a little more. As always, I’ll see you in the next post, and until then, may your day be a critical success!


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