Sleep And Better Cognition

Sleep And Better Cognition

Sleep plays a vital role in developing cognitive ability and researchers have set numerous experimental tales to prove the functional relationship between sleep and cognition. One of them was tried on students preparing for a competitive exam. A few students were made to study a particular topic for thirty minutes without enough sleep, while the remaining slept peacefully before and after studying for the same amount of time.

The students who slept soundly had 20 per cent greater retention and grasping than the ones who were sleep deprived. In addition, after waking up they also had fresh energy and motivation to study more. Adequate sleep, ideally 6.5 to 7 hours, works as a rejuvenating element for the body, after a long tiring day.

In simple scientific terms, sleep can be classified into two segments: NREM (Non Rapid Eye Movement) and REM (Rapid Eye Movement) sleep. Both NREM and REM sleep changes throughout the night at every 90 minutes alternately. This is the prime element responsible for overnight neural-functioning.

During NREM sleep, the brain stems activity is naturally reduced, thus the related neurons subside their firing. While during REM sleep, neurons become active and release numerous brain-modulating hormones. This alternating constellation of sleep supports regulation and preparation of numerous brain functions and hence can lead to enhanced cognitive performances.

“if sleep does not serve an absolutely vital function, then it is the biggest mistake the evolutionary process has ever made”

Sleep And Memory

The concept of memory begins with the process of encoding. This involves a plethora of experiences and information we might not even remember but which exists in our subconscious mind and requires encoding. Here, the sleep element plays its part. For memories to persist for a longer duration in our lifespan, an unconscious operation of events should be held in the form of sleep.

Sleep encodes and results in the consolidation of memory. prompt decision making and higher concentration. When children are allowed to nap during the day, their grasping ability and recalling power can rise around 10 per cent more on waking up.

Sleep And Reparation

Exhaustion of the brain or sleep deprivation can sometimes reduce the tiring of brain neurons and can totally block your brain’s plasticity. An experiment was conducted on a starved cat A cat was caged and roped and a tumbler of milk was kept out of its reach. The cat tried its level best to grab the milk but facing continuous failure gave up and slept.

After 20 minutes of sound sleep, experimenters were amazed to analyse the cat’s behaviour. It patiently spend time working on the rope, succeeded in freeing itself and grabbed the milk. It is also analysed that women are more resilient to the effect of short sleep due to environmental demands, while men are more susceptible than women to cognitive impairment following sleep deprivation.

Sleep encodes and results in the consolidation of memory, prompt decision making, and higher concentration

Why Sound Sleep Is Vital

Ideally, a human mind generates over 40-50 thousand thoughts throughout the day, a few of these might trigger negative emotions based on situations. Moreover, the negative thoughts impact is so complete that one cannot get rid of these negative impacts in sleep either. These thoughts can end up stimulating in the form of speech or even sleep walking. Thus, sound sleep is essential for a healthier lifestyle. Sound sleep can be accommodated in placating these thoughts eventually, surfacing them to a deeper level.

In other words, when one is overloaded with the negative waves over a particular situation, one has to generate positive thoughts mechanically, thinking “all is well or “everyone is correct in his/her perspective before going to bed. Else, sleep which cames all the criticism and grudges are as good as sleep deprivation and headache.


To conclude, sleep leads us to the right kind of emotions and alleviates excitements. Overflow of emotions and sensuous feelings are generally misinterpreted with sleepless nights. Immature youth find pride in their wakefulness and as a result, they habitually release wrong hormones with frequent flow of energy which could have been utilized in other constructive tasks.

Therefore, sleep tends to inculcate innovative attitudes within us, keeps us away from the unnecessary temperaments and propels us towards higher cognitive ability. Spiritually, sleep works as traffic control amidst the clouded and cluttered mind.

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