Better Sleep Can Help Improve Learning and Memory

Study: better sleep improves memory and learning

If you want to improve your memory and learning ability, a crucial aspect is making sure you’re getting enough sleep suggests a new study in the June 6 edition of Science magazine. The study in mice seemed to show that nerve cell connections strengthened during deep sleep, and may help to explain the way sleep is able to help the brain better retain information.

The co-author of the study, Wen-Biao Gan who works at the New York University School of Medicine, says the findings show the importance sleep has on learning and memory. He notes that when a person sleeps, they are far from wasting time. During that time, the brain is making better connections to improve memory and learning.

Researches have known for quite some time that there was a direct link between the number of hours of sleep a person was able to get at night and memory. The problem was that although they knew this, they weren’t sure exactly how this link occurred.

The researchers used advanced microscopes to view the living brains of both-well rested and sleep-deprived mice. This allowed them to see that the mice who received enough sleep formed a much larger number of connections between neurons than those mice which lacked sleep. In addition, the disrupted the sleep of the mice which found deep sleep (slow wave sleep) is the most important type of sleep when it comes to memory and learning. The fact that sleep is an important activity for brains to develop new neuron connections is something that scientists had not known before this study.

One can assume that improved memory and better learning would be highly valued by business, and help those who get a good night’s sleep on a regular basis over those who lack sleep and have trouble with these two activities. Lack of sleep can also cost you quite a bit of money in a variety of ways.

For example, those who are tired can lack the energy to make crucial decisions about insurance, investments, loans, mortgages and other sensitive financial matters. If a decision has to be made, the lack of sleep can make it not well thought through or as comprehensive as one made with enough sleep. You may be too tired to listen to important advice, your analytic skills may not be as sharp, and you may not fully comprehend all that your read and hear. Since completely understanding what it is you’re doing (and the results of those actions) is an important part of all financial situations, lack of sleep can lead to financially poor decisions.

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One Response to Better Sleep Can Help Improve Learning and Memory

  1. Gwenie says:

    Frankly I do not know how people in NYC, for example, can sleep at all due to the noise. If the room is too hot or too cold, I sleep badly. If I am agitated about some life event I sleep badly. If someone in my family is ill and I am care taking, I sleep badly. If I am in pain, a very frequent experience, I sleep badly.

    What we need is a soporific that is nonaddicting, pleasant to take and will allow us to have slow wave sleep without any hangover the next morning or day.

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