Crouse Health Online: Wellness is just a click away.
Share Share
  |  Connect with Us: 
large
med
small
Text Size
 

Health News



Sleep Appears to Aid Learning

Sleep Appears to Aid Learning

11/04/10

THURSDAY, Nov. 4 (HealthDay News) -- If you're trying to learn a new word, you may want to sleep on it, a new study suggests.

Researchers taught volunteers new words in the evening and then immediately tested their recall of the words. The volunteers slept in the laboratory while their brain activity was recorded. Tests conducted the next morning showed that the participants could remember and recognize more words than they did immediately after learning them.

This improvement was not seen in another group of participants who learned new words and were tested in the morning and re-tested in the evening, with no sleep in between tests.

The brain activity data collected from the volunteers in the sleep group showed that deep sleep (slow-wave sleep) helped strengthen their memories of new words.

The researchers also found that a type of brain activity called sleep spindles played a role in the ability to remember new words. Sleep spindles are brief but intense bursts of activity that indicate information transfer between two different memory storage areas, the hippocampus and the neocortex.

The more sleep spindles a person experienced during sleep, the more successful they were in using new words in their vocabulary.

"We suspected from previous work that sleep had a role to play in the reorganization of new memories, but this is the first time we've really been able to observe it in action, and understand the importance of spindle activity in the process," study co-author Gareth Gaskell, a professor in the psychology department at the University of York in England, said in a university news release.

The study was published Nov. 2 in the Journal of Neuroscience.

More information

The U.S. National Institute of Mental Health explains that a nap is better than caffeine for enhancing memory.

Copyright © 2010 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.

OF INTEREST:
 

Latest News

Crouse Hospital Appoints Chief Information Officer
more >

MedEx Bedside Prescription Delivery Service

Free service offers convenience, patient education at discharge.
more >

CrouseSports Express After-Hours Ortho Care

Immediate care of orthopedic injuries in kids and adults.
more >

Weight Loss Surgery

Is it right for you? Attend a free information seminar held twice monthly.
more >

Quality at Crouse

See how Crouse Hospital strives to provide the best in patient care.
more >

Cheer Up That Special Someone

Say get well or welcome a new arrival with a gift purchased right at Crouse.

more >

Make an Online Donation Now

Your donation of any amount helps support Crouse services & programs in a meaningful way.
more >

Shop Online Now

Say get well, thinking of you or welcome new baby with a unique gift from the Crouse Gift Shop.

more >