Memory and sleep: Researchers finally discover why getting sufficient sleep dramatically boosts brain performance

woman sleep awake bed pillow1041158890 - Memory and sleep: Researchers finally discover why getting sufficient sleep dramatically boosts brain performance
Spread the love

(Health News) The brain works at its finest when it is well rested. Therefore, having the right amount of sleep a day, which is at least seven to nine hours, is needed for the brain to be alert and to focus, and to learn and remember information well. Recently, a team of researchers from the University of York found that sleep boosts memory by strengthening new and old versions of the same memory.

woman sleep awake bed pillow1041158890 - Memory and sleep: Researchers finally discover why getting sufficient sleep dramatically boosts brain performance

The study indicated that sleep improves both old and new versions of memory, which helps in using memories adaptively. The brain updates the memory with new information when you recall something, creating and storing different versions of the same event. It does not overwrite or replace the old version of the experience.

“In this way, sleep is allowing us to use our memory in the most efficient way possible, enabling us to update our knowledge of the world and to adapt our memories for future experiences,” explained Scott Cairney, lead researcher of the study.

The researchers investigated on how sleep affects memory by conducting an experiment on participants who were randomly divided into two groups. They were tasked to study the placement of words that were displayed on a computer screen. Testing the experiment, the groups were shown each of the words at the center of the screen and were afterwards asked to specify where they thought they belonged. After the first test, the first group slept for an hour and a half, while the other group remained awake. The two groups then repeated the experiment.

The results showed that the two groups remembered the location at the second test closer to the original location compared to what they recalled at the first test. This indicated that the memory was updated and new memories had been formed. Moreover, results revealed that the group who had sleep prior to the second test remembered the locations closer in distance to both the original, and the locations retrieved in the first test, compared to the group who stayed awake. This suggests that sleep improved the new and old versions of the memory.

“Our study reveals that sleep has a protective effect on memory and facilitates the adaptive updating of memories,” said corresponding author Gareth Gaskell.

However, the researchers noted that even if this process enables memories to adapt to changes, it can also incorporate wrong information into the memory storage. The brain’s memory will draw on both accurate and inaccurate versions of the same experience, which causes confusions in how people recall past events.

Having a good sleep

If you have been having some issues with your sleep or you want to improve the quality of sleep, it is advisable to adapt to some lifestyle changes. Here are some tips on how to have a good sleep.

  • Have a sleep schedule of the same bedtime and wake-up time every day to regulate your body clock and help you fall and stay asleep for the night.
  • Exercising every day, whether vigorous or light, will help you sleep better at night.
  • The design of your bedroom affects your sleep. It should be cool, free from noise, and free from any light.
  • Your bed and pillows should be comfortable and supportive enough for a better sleep at night. (Related: Boost immunity and enjoy better sleep with plants in the bedroom that are recommended by NASA.)
  • Turn off any bright light in the evening, and expose yourself to sunlight in the morning to manage your circadian rhythms.
  • Avoid drinking, smoking, and eating heavy meals at night as these can interrupt sleep.

Read more information on how the brain works at

Sources include:

About lijimae2012

My grandmother was a herbalist. She taught me how to mix herbs to cure ailments. I grew up with her from the age of 15 years old. I was going to school  and at the same time returned to her shop of herbs learning different kinds of mixture of herbs and also their names. I have been involved in herbal mixture and I also used it to cure a lot of people who orthodox medicine could not cure even though a lot of people have abused herbal medicine. Selling herbal mixture, popularly called agbo, has also been a great source of income to me and my family. Why I Started This Home Remedies Blog As an educated herbalist , i have been into these work for some years now which  I have help so many peoples. One good-day  i thought about people who are not benefit from these like those outside the Nigeria or peoples who are shame  to seek for a herbalist. Then i decides to create a website so as they can contact me and i would gladly help them. I began this blog in 2017 out of a desire to share my passion for herbs and natural living with others. Above all, am a Muslim and am thankful for the daily love and grace Allah bestows me. I’m glad you’ve visited me here at my home on the web and hope you will join me as I continue down the road to healthier living and my mission to help peoples across the nation! Let’s Connect I would love to connect with you!  Feel free to subscribe to receive free regular post updates in your inbox!  Also, you can find me on facebook, twitter,

View all posts by lijimae2012 →

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.