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Sleep and Memory, a powerful relationship?

Updated on May 28, 2017

For those of you who are attempting to increase memory retention, you may have found many variables that could assist in your venture. The difficulty is finding proven techniques that actually work amidst the influx of subjective information and holistic hearsay. Because of the substantial amount of misinformation out there, this article will focus on one primary means of maintaining memory health.

That focus is sleep. Sleep is a proven and viable method for keeping your memory and brain in proper order and increasing your current retention shortcomings. You may find it surprising how many individuals neglect sleep and in turn find their memory suffering. Not only can correcting this noticeably maintain your recall abilities, but utilizing particular methods can actually enhance it.

Sleep and memory, improved learning and cognition?

The reputable journal Science reported that it is well known that sleep plays an important role in memory and learning. Their studies also further found that new neuronal connections were formed in the brain; a defining proof that memory is improved during sleep. It was also a finding that was prior undiscovered. This furthers the notion that one of the main roles of sleep is to process the prior day’s information and form memories in the brain.

Sleep, viewed from this point, shows that sleep doesn’t just help one preserve memory; it is the mode by which memory is retained. In other words, it is in sleep, not while waking, that memories are secured, filed, and solidified in the mind.

Sleep and memory, howmany hours do you need?

The average amount of sleep that an individual requires can vary in minor amounts according to their physiology. The standard 8 hour sleep suggestion is a viable gauge for measuring your sleep patterns. If you sleep within an hour either way of this period without interruption, then you body is achieving the healthy sleep it requires.

This constant practice can assist in job performance, honing fine motor skills, and recalling acquired memories from prior experiences. Given that sleep is a relatively uncomplicated action, the best way to achieve it for those that struggle with getting the right amount can be to follow the suggestions below:

  • Do not eat 2-3 hours before bedtime
  • Listen to white noise or a non-syncopated rhythm block other sleep altering sounds
  • Refrain from consuming caffeine, alcohol, or cigarettes before preparing to sleep
  • Darken the room. This cues the brain to release hormones that aid in deep sleep retrieval
  • Prepare your sleep environment to be as comfortable and relaxing as possible

For those that don’t follow a proper sleep regimen, your brain can actually degrade. Neuronal firing suffers, memory loss and reasoning issues occurs, and even emotional difficulties arise that impact normal daily activities. The correlation between sleep and memory is very strong for various problems and can severly impact your wellbeing. Therefore it is of the utmost importance that you create a sleep pattern.

This pattern consists of you going to bed and waking up at around the same time each cycle. Once your body acclimates to this, it will develop a habitual pattern autonomous of your conscious actions, easing you into sleep on a steady and expected basis.

“Poor quality sleep in adults causes memories to stay stuck in the hippocampus and not
reach the prefrontal cortex. This results in forgetfulness and difficulty remembering names.”
Medical News Today, January 28, 2013

Concluding on sleep deprivation and memory

For people that suffer from lowered job performance, memory loss, and an overall mental fatigue, you may have discovered that you are suffering from sleep deprivation. Thankfully, you have seen that it is not difficult to take the clear steps necessary in order to recover from such a malady.

In order for your mind to perform at peak levels it must be provided the rest necessary for it to regenerate itself, file memories, process thoughts, and heal. The best way to do that is to make a strict plan for achieving better sleep in a habitual manner so you can perform at your peak levels. Your brain deserves nothing less.


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