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Science

Poor Sleep Prevents Brain From Storing Memories 180

Posted by timothy
from the so-if-you're-reading-this-go-to-bed dept.
jjp9999 writes "Recent findings published on Jan. 27 in the journal Nature Neuroscience may inspire you to get some proper sleep. Researchers at UC Berkeley found that REM sleep plays a key role in moving short term memories from the hippocampus (where short-term memories are stored) to the prefrontal cortex (where long-term memories are stored), and that degeneration of the frontal lobe as we grow older may play a key role in forgetfulness. 'What we have discovered is a dysfunctional pathway that helps explain the relationship between brain deterioration, sleep disruption and memory loss as we get older – and with that, a potentially new treatment avenue,' said UC Berkeley sleep researcher Matthew Walker."
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Poor Sleep Prevents Brain From Storing Memories

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  • by Anonymous Coward

    Some people just don't sleep well.

    • by tverbeek (457094) on Monday January 28, 2013 @08:21AM (#42714173) Homepage
      See a sleep specialist. If you don't sleep well, there's probably a reason. For many overweight people, the problem is sleep apnea, caused by the airway being obstructed, which the body reacts to by waking up. A different sleeping position, a device worn over the mouth and nose to help keep the airway open, and/or losing weight can help. (I know about this from a friend who suffers from this problem, but isn't willing to do anything about it. And not coincidentally has been suffering from increasing Can't Remember Shit Syndrome.)
      • by Muad'Dave (255648) on Monday January 28, 2013 @08:38AM (#42714223) Homepage

        If he has sleep apnea, it can lead to a marked increase in his risk for heart attacks. With severe sleep apnea, your body senses your blood O2 saturation dropping and wakes you up in a panic thinking you're dying (seriously). That sort of 'night of 1000 deaths' leads to high cortisol levels and all sorts of other nasty things. I assume you probably already have, but urge him to at least have a sleep study done - that may show him that a simple CPAP machine can return his sleep patterns to normal. It quite literally saved my life.

        • by tverbeek (457094)
          He's had sleep studies done. They gave him a CPAP, and he just whined that it was uncomfortable, and fretted about it being embarrassing to wear to bed with someone (not exactly an immediate danger). The guy's got "issues".
          • by Muad'Dave (255648)

            Any decent prospective partner would understand. It's better to sound a little like Darth Vader than snore like a freight train.

            Funny story - a female friend, my wife and I spent 3 weeks in Scotland, and this was the first time I'd taken my CPAP on a trip. We spent the night in Edinburgh on Prince's Street (the Old Waverly, I think it was). I was relegated to the outer bedroom, and the ladies got the one with the two beds.

            I was shocked out of my mind the next morning when I opened my eyes to see some guy in

            • by tverbeek (457094)
              Yeah, if they were going to be put off by a CPAP, I don't think they would've gotten past his extra weight, unreliable hygiene, poor job prospects.... :/
        • by nblender (741424) on Monday January 28, 2013 @10:01AM (#42714623)

          I also was diagnosed with sleep apnea... I was routinely waking up 1-4 times every night thinking I had to pee... It turns out my brain was waking up my body due to low O2 saturation, then the conscious part of my brain was saying "why am I awake? It must be because I have to pee" so I would...

          My sleep study showed that I stopped breathing 262 times in the short 4 hours of sleep with the recorder... So the 'cure' was CPAP which I just knew wasn't going to work for me... I went to a different sleep clinic and they prescribed a dental appliance which looks like this:

          http://www.sleepandhealth.com/sites/www.sleepandhealth.com/files/images/Article_images/TAP.jpg [sleepandhealth.com]

          It brings the lower jaw forward which helps prevent constriction of your airway when you relax during sleep. It has an adjustment screw so you can fine tune it. You start with the screw all the way relaxed to become accustomed to wearing the appliance, and then slowly over time you turn it forward until you start to sleep well. Then you do a followup sleep study so they can compare and check the adjustment.

          I can travel with it, no sore throat in the morning, no whirring next to the bed, etc.

          The first night I had the appliance in, with the adjustment screw all the way relaxed, my wife kept waking up in a panic to check whether I was still breathing. I was no longer snoring and because that was a sound that was so pervasive in our marriage, she had trouble sleeping without hearing my snoring...

          Now after two years, I consistently sleep through the night and get a solid 7-8 hours each night. I no longer feel a need to nap in the afternoons or evenings. I can't say my memory is back to normal, though... But I put that down to my advanced age.

          After telling my dad about it, he got an appliance as well. He tried CPAP when he was first diagnosed but after a month or two of trying it, he was sleeping worse because of the damn machine and hoses and mask so he gave it up. The dental appliance changed his life. He's going on 18 months with it and his health has improved, his weight has improved, and he's finding it easier to keep his blood sugar under control.. The sleep clinic that initially prescribed and sold him the CPAP machine claimed to have heard of the dental appliances but said they didn't work so CPAP was the only solution. So he came into town and went to the clinic that I went to, to get his dental appliance.

          So if you can't tolerate CPAP, then consider talking to the sleep clinic about the dental appliances. Note: they're quite expensive and they're not the same as the cheap "boil and bite" ones, which don't last very long and don't allow you to adjust the offset of the lower jaw.

      • by dunkelfalke (91624) on Monday January 28, 2013 @09:09AM (#42714341)

        Which is stupid. I myself have got sleap apnea and the first time I tried that CPAP device was the first time in years I felt actually rested in the morning. The difference in life quality is enormous - it was like I was a zombie before and now alive again. That feeling alive has helped me to pick up sports and to lose over 50 kg, the only thing I regret is not starting the therapy earlier.

      • by jedimark (794802) on Monday January 28, 2013 @10:12AM (#42714681) Homepage

        I found it's a good thing to scare the crap out of them with an overnight oximetry reading. Cheap data recording oximeters are dirt cheap on ebay, and a good gift/loan for someone worth caring about.

        Does wonders for the die hard denialists seeing the blood oxygen saturation drop to near death levels multiple times throughout the night.

        Even more hilarious is showing people a cam recording of them stopping breathing while they sleep, with all the gory choking sounds.

        Usually after seeing or hearing all that, they are off to the doc to book a sleep test.

      • by dpilot (134227)

        I was diagnosed with apnea, but there were various delays in getting treatment. In that interval I "fell off the cliff" and found that in my fifties I had the energy level of someone in their eighties. (From caring for my mother, I had good experience of what that was like.) I didn't connect it with the apnea diagnosis at first but eventually getting on CPAP fixed the problem. The problems of sleep apnea can be deeper than suspected - don't look for just sleepiness.

    • Some people just don't sleep well.

      Good question. Rollerblinds to achieve maximum darkness, no LEDs shining in the room. Fresh air, fresh sheets. Comfortable temperature. Maybe watch an ASMR video [youtube.com] to relax before going to sleep. Eat a bit before going to sleep. Medication can be very helpful too. Just my two cents.

      • ...maybe it's that our brain deteriorates as we age and thus memories are not stored as effectively. Same thing goes for the 'celia' in our ears, we start losing them from birth, plain and simple.
      • by Old Wolf (56093)

        Maybe watch an ASMR video [youtube.com] to relax before going to sleep.

        Wow .. I have had ASMR's all my life but didn't know that it had a name, or that other people didn't get it. Thanks for the tip!

  • by smitty_one_each (243267) * on Monday January 28, 2013 @07:53AM (#42714083) Homepage Journal
    . . .why the last 20 years or so are such a blur. But it does offer hope that the lousy economy may be remembered as sucking less.
    • by P-niiice (1703362)
      This is exatly how I feel. A lot of my life is a blur. Last night I had a critical stuffed animal incident recounted for me by my daughter and I didn't remember any of it.
  • by girlinatrainingbra (2738457) on Monday January 28, 2013 @07:55AM (#42714089)
    The interesting part in the berkeley link is the possibilty for "electrical intervention":
    For example, in an earlier study, neuroscientists in Germany successfully used electrical stimulation of the brain in young adults to enhance deep sleep and doubled their overnight memory.

    So what kind of voltage, current, and signal sequence would you use for this?

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday January 28, 2013 @07:58AM (#42714099)

    So this means our brains use a stop-the-world type of generational garbage collector?

    What was I talking about again?

  • by saibot834 (1061528) on Monday January 28, 2013 @07:59AM (#42714103) Homepage

    As a student, a large part of my work involves remembering. I have found that I need 8 hours of sleep – if I sleep less than that, I'm useless all day: I have trouble concentrating and usually don't get any studying done.

    Others however, seem to be off fine sleeping only 3 or 4 hours a day. Sure, they are tired, but it doesn't impact their ability to concentrate in the same way. Any biologist / neuroscientists here who can explain this?

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by NickDB (1289180)
      People are different, but I'll need a few million in grant money to be sure.
    • by Anonymous Coward on Monday January 28, 2013 @08:30AM (#42714193)

      Some people can enter REM faster than others.
      Here's the crazy [dustincurtis.com].

      • I'm actually like that. Non-24-hour sleep-wake syndrome, that is. (I'm writing this as I'm winding down from my "day" at 8am, after waking up at 7pm last night.) I'm closer to a 26 hour cycle than a 28, though. Thanks for the link, I might try that out.
        • I used to think I had a natural 28-hour rhythm, but these days I'm leaning toward environmental factors as the cause rather than anything built-in to by body.

          If I get some sun during the day, and I'm fairly active, and I stop looking at screens and having bright lights on a bit before the sun goes down, my 28-hour sleep cycle disappears in a hurry.

          So, in short, if I live entirely unlike the modern suburb-dwelling American office worker that I am then my sleep becomes way more healthy. Go figure. <sarca

          • by sjames (1099)

            Most people's free running cycle is longer than the actual day. We all depend on various environmental cues to synchronize the clock. As you point out, modern life is nearly a perfect storm of disrupting those cues.

            I have found that it's not just the sleep/wake cycle that it screws with. Depression can also 'magically' disappear with adequate sleep on a decent schedule with appropriate exposure to sunlight. I have to wonder how much of the health care crisis in the U.S. would just go away if we would return

            • I got clued in when I realized that I slept way better and felt amazing when my wife and I travelled. The main reasons, as best I can tell:

              * lots (loooots) of walking, much of it outdoors
              * very nearly zero minutes spent sitting, staring at a computer screen; solo down-time is filled with reading a book for pleasure or travel guides.

              I eat better when we travel, too—limited or no snacking, not by conscious effort, but because I'm too busy moving around to idly stuff my face. When I'm busy like that, I

              • by sjames (1099)

                People do spend too much time in front of the PC. I'm guilty of that myself sometimes. There are a few ways to limit the damage. Since I telecommute, I set up the work computer next to a window. I get occasional glare to deal with, but it's worth it to have the exposure to natural light throughout the day. I also take breaks from sitting there so I don't end up with long stretches at a time. It's amazing how helpful it is to just get up and do something else a few times during the day.

                Bike paths would be g

              • by ultranova (717540)

                We need to start thinking of sitting at a computer for hours on end as dangerous and distasteful, like excessive drinking or smoking, I think, complete with some stigmatization of those who go overboard and active discouragement throughout society, including at work. We do that a bit with WoW nerds and the like, but all the people who zone out for 3+ hours a night on Wikipedia, TV-tropes, Facebook, Slashdot, Netflix, internet shopping sites, doing obsessive packrat-like downloading, playing less-nerdy games

      • by TheLink (130905)

        Instead of that insanity[1] I'd recommend two sleeps: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Segmented_sleep [wikipedia.org]
        http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-16964783 [bbc.co.uk]

        [1] The fact that the guy says when you get it wrong you'll feel tired for _days_ should tell you how insane that method is. You can probably _survive_ on that, but I doubt you will thrive.

        • by sysrammer (446839)

          Interesting studies. I gotta go take a nap, er, 1st sleep.

        • by sjames (1099)

          The Siesta seems like a good idea as does bi-phasic sleep. The crazy polyphasic schedules sound like a carefully calculated assault on the brain. It seems to me that you end up not sleeping so much but instead spend much of your awake time making sure you don't miss your next sleep time. I have to wonder if all of that was summed up fairly if you wouldn't be more productive with a less extreme approach.

          Fortunately, there is a really great way to tell if you're sleeping enough. If you wake before your alarm

    • If it's any consolation, as one of the 3-4 hour offline people, I find that I need to do catch-up sleep every 10-12 weeks - I'll end up sleeping through most of a weekend.

      While this is purely subjective, yes, my ability to concentrate is altered in general (most days, following a "short sleep") as compared right after a weekend of sleeping.

      As practical consideration, most of the world understands your sleep cycle. Most of the world does not understand my sleep cycle, and does not like to accommodate the fa

      • by mikael_j (106439)

        As practical consideration, most of the world understands your sleep cycle.

        Yet if you tell people that you actually need those eight hours of sleep to function properly you get ridiculed. Everyone expects you to function just fine on 5-6 hours per night, any more is seen by a lot of people as being a bit "lazy" (either going to bed "too early" or "sleeping in").

        I'm not ashamed to say that anything less than seven hours per night on average completely messes me up, I can feel it the moment I wake up, I need more sleep or I will function poorly (a few months ago I wound up only gett

        • by sjames (1099)

          Most people actually do need the 7 to 8 hours, they've just been operating sub-optimally for so long they no longer realize it.

      • Do you sleep more when you are bored? That is what I do. Nothing like having projects to work on to have me up early. Then I catch up a bit on sleep when things slow down.
    • by Hatta (162192)

      Sure, they are tired, but it doesn't impact their ability to concentrate in the same way.

      It does, they are just not aware of it or don't want to admit it.

    • Methylphenidate [wikipedia.org] and coffee. Abused by all the hip kids in Law school.
    • by mikael (484)

      Not a clinical trial, but my experience from living in different apartments and staying in hotel rooms, as well as hearing comments from other guests. Good things that reduce the numbers of hours required to sleep:

      1. Blackout curtains - make the room completely dark - not a single photon from a single street lamp, emergency light, security light, car headlight at night.
      2. Soundproofing / quiet area - you don't have other residents walking past drunk or with suitcases past your apartment or room, or other st

  • Typo (Score:5, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday January 28, 2013 @08:10AM (#42714135)

    If I'm reading the source article correctly, it has a big typo that propagated to the slashdot post. The source article abbreviated non-rapid eye movement to REM. It is deep stage 3 (delta) non-rapid eye movement (NREM) sleep that is important to memory, not REM sleep.

    • by martas (1439879)

      It is deep stage 3 (delta) non-rapid eye movement (NREM) sleep that is important to memory, not REM sleep.

      Where are you getting that? I've learned from multiple sources (college cognitive psych, many news articles, Wikipedia) that REM sleep is believed to be important for some types of memory.

      • by rjr162 (69736)

        Healthy adults typically spend one-quarter of the night in deep, non-rapid-eye-movement (REM) sleep. Slow waves are generated by the brain’s middle frontal lobe. Deterioration of this frontal region of the brain in elderly people is linked to their failure to generate deep sleep, the study found.

  • . . . my employer has outsourced sleep.

  • by dalutong (260603) <djtansey@NosPaM.gmail.com> on Monday January 28, 2013 @08:21AM (#42714171)

    I like to follow these types of stories. I lost all of my memory one morning when I was 19. The cause isn't clear. I was in an underdeveloped country at the time, so the medical facilities didn't exist to determine what had happened. (It might have been a delayed effect of a car accident I was in two years earlier.) It's also probably important to note that my ability to form new memories was also severely impeded.

    I wonder a little bit about what "moving" a memory means. At least in my amateur study, memories aren't complete entities (like a file, database, etc). They are mixes of memories, the awareness of what has occurred, and associations, our integration of what we already know with what we are remembering. That's part of the reason people can have such differing memories of a shared experience. Some of that is about how memories are retrieved. In my study and experience, they are retrieved by these associations we make. That's why memory tricks involve making varied associations -- to song, to a mental or physical image, etc. For people who haven't learned those tricks, an association can be as simple as "I remember we met in a bar..." then the rest of the picture is pieced together.

    I wonder sometimes if my having to learn different ways of "remembering" things will allow me to maintain a higher level of memory functioning into my elder years. I have to be very aware and purposeful about what I remember. I was in college when I lost my memory, so I had to learn very quickly how to perform in school without being able to learn in the conventional sense (I could not remember the beginning of a semester by the time it ended). So I focused much more on the integration of memories into my existing awareness (aka forming associations between new experiences and prior knowledge.) I still have a very poor memory retrieval in the classic sense, but I can still learn lessons well. It has just required a much higher level of sentience with regards to how memories are stored and what I hope to gain from a memory in the long term.

    • by Dorianny (1847922)
      It seems to me you have somehow managed to implement a relational database type memory retrieval system. Instead of direct associations between memories and triggers, you seem to have yours arranged according to first-order predicate logic. Very impressive indeed.
      • by dalutong (260603)

        I'll have to look up some of those phrases so that I can see how well they apply. I do try to make as many associations as I can. And I try to imagine how else I might use the information so that I can also think about how it might be referenced. But a lot of my life is working through configurations of associations until one triggers a memory (or I simply conclude that it is the most reasonable conclusion even if it didn't trigger a memory.)

    • by Sockatume (732728)

      Your experience sounds a lot like our current understanding of how memory works: small pieces of inter-related information are stored by their connections to pre-existing ideas, and recovered in a synthetic process of re-assembly.

  • I think this is news-for-nerds not so much because it is a science article, but more so because, for some reason, all of us who work in IT keep messing up with our sleep schedules (or at least have a tendency to). So it's interesting news.
  • I don't even *remember* where I first heard that we need sleep to form memories, but I've known it for at least 3 decades now.... certainly long before I graduated high school.
    • I was going to say the same thing. Not news? I even have some vague recollection that it was specifically delta pattern sleep that's required. I don't remember seeing the acronym NREM though. It was just called delta pattern.

      Perhaps the article says what's new in this study, but I can't read it. I've already blown my limit and read one article today.

    • I would say it has probably been known for centuries or more, even. This isn't the first time I see a study like this on slashdot : universally known fact of life discovered by a team of scientists (though, I don't remember what it was about!). I won't discard it as meaningless : it's pretty interesting to witness scientific findings, with all rigor and instrumentation techniques etc. rediscovering something your grand-grandmother could probably have told you.

      • by sysrammer (446839)

        ... it's pretty interesting to witness scientific findings, with all rigor and instrumentation techniques etc. rediscovering something your grand-grandmother could probably have told you.

        Yeah, every now & then something spectacular comes out of studies of "common sense" things that everybody could have told you. I can't think of any at the moment 'cause I'm too tired.

  • by rmdingler (1955220) on Monday January 28, 2013 @09:00AM (#42714305)
    But for me: some light physical activity during the day(yard work or such), a hot shower and a couple of adult beverages before bedtime, and a clear conscience go a long way. If all that fails, a couple of threads like this on /. will usually put me out like a midnight cigarette.
  • What was that I just read?
  • by egcagrac0 (1410377) on Monday January 28, 2013 @09:24AM (#42714399)

    This story about sleep (and the lack thereof) was submitted at 2:15am [slashdot.org].

  • by thegreatemu (1457577) on Monday January 28, 2013 @09:47AM (#42714511)

    I'm actually only about half-joking here. When you have a newborn, you get practically no sleep for months at a time, and yet people still have multiple kids. Why? Because nobody clearly remembers those early terrible sleepless months!

    • by H0p313ss (811249)

      I'm actually only about half-joking here. When you have a newborn, you get practically no sleep for months at a time, and yet people still have multiple kids. Why? Because nobody clearly remembers those early terrible sleepless months!

      I was saying exactly this to my brother-in-law who just started parenting, the first five years is just one long blur. I'm not sure what's the bigger factor, PTSD or sleep depravation.

    • by Twinbee (767046)
      Can't people soundproof the rooms with the baby in? If it's because it needs attention, then you could still sound-proof it, but have a detection system which alerts just one parent (they can take it in turns, so every other night is a good sleep).
      • by PPH (736903)

        Detection system?

        Most things that will adversely affect babies do not exhibit the symptom of screaming and hollering. When the kid is howling, odds are its OK.

        Panicky new parents always think they have to jump up whenever the baby howls.

  • by realsilly (186931) on Monday January 28, 2013 @09:54AM (#42714559)

    .... sleep loss which then results in poor memory retention.

    I was in a marriage with a man I absolutely loved with all my heart and soul and I thought he was a good guy, but he just up and quit the marriage, leaving with no real explanation as to what happened. Naturally, I slipped into deep stress and depression, I found myself lying awake every night for hours and hours only to get about 2 to 3 hours of restless sleep a night. I've been doing this for over a year now and each night I struggle to find restful sleep.

    I try, but it still eludes me. Exercise to the point of exhaustion only barely helps. Sleep aids don't even phase me. Alcohol does virtually nothing, and frankly I've avoided it due to migraines that it can cause.

    I believe that happiness is the best thing for sleep and a good memory. Because most happy people aren't usually depressed and less stressed out.

    • by H0p313ss (811249)

      Sounds familiar, my sleep patterns went to shit after my divorce. The only thing I founds that helped is having a routine, in my case it's go to bed, read a book in dim lighting, when my eyes start to blur turn off the light.

      If I don't actually go to bed I'll be up for hours watching TV or playing with a computer, once I fall into that it's hard to break out of.

      If I don't read a book then my mind is still racing thinking about... well everything.

      After ten years of this I can say I have an almost normal slee

    • by eulernet (1132389)

      It seems that your self-esteem suffered with this divorce.
      In fact, I believe that you define your value within the eyes of others.
      In other words, if they quit you, it means that you worth nothing.
      You give too much credit to other people's opinions.

      I strongly discourage you to use pills or alcohol, since they tend to create an addiction, and make your life miserable in the long term. They also won't solve your real problem, only the symptoms.

      Did you try meditation, or "mindfulness" ?
      I can provide you a few r

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by jedimark (794802)

      Totally agree.

      Keep your chin up.. Just remember that jerk isn't losing any sleep over you. He stopped caring about your sleep a long time ago.

      It's not fun lying awake every stinking night wondering what the heck you did wrong to end up in that situation.
      It totally sucks waking up at 3am and feeling the same depressive cycle switching on again and again, when all you want to do is get some frigging sleep.

      And all that time wasted, spent in a loop trying to process all the conflicting advice you've been given

    • by GuyverIV (240206) on Monday January 28, 2013 @01:28PM (#42716799)

      I was going to post anonymous, but recovered my ancient log-in so that you'd at least have a "face" for this drive-by. I don't even know why I'm posting, other than my brother did something similar, but at least he had the minimum courage to tell his wife the reasons as he was leaving. I'd never been quite so disappointed in him when I heard he just walked away... So, what you wrote hit something in my heart of hearts, so, here goes random helpful internet guy...

      I'm so sorry to hear how you were hurt. I don't know why people do hurtful things like that. There's no excuse for abandoning someone that cares for you and that you've cared for in the past.

      I'm sorry the hurt is still with you. I hope you're getting help, and if not, PLEASE get help. Some may say it's appropriate for you to have problems while you "mourn" the loss of your loved one, but if you've been in so much pain that it STILL troubles your sleep, for over a year, that's not "normal mourning."

      Your brain can do amazingly bad things to you, and like most brain disorders, it's really hard to realize that you may need help. The mind loves to lie to itself, to reassure itself that while things aren't "right," they're not *THAT* bad. But it might just be. You may need more than just *struggle* to get through this. I'm not talking meds (though they may help too, they did for my own issues), I'm talking a licensed therapist at the least, a shrink if you can get one.

      This is a link [seculartherapy.org] to a project that looks to connect people with therapists who practice based on Evidence and published data. I'm specifically posting a link to non-religious therapists, not to cause trouble, but because even if you may be religious, and may indeed find a good religious therapist, it's also possible their beliefs may conflict with yours, and may cause more pain than balm. I think it makes sense to start with a therapist that doesn't even have religion as a component, then discuss introducing that as part of your therapy later, should you desire it.

      As alone as you may feel, as worthless and petty as far, FAR too many people are, there are *good* people out there. People who can more than make up for the scumbags out there, who will trip over themselves to help you, if they just know you are in need.

      If you're not sure you need help, if you think you're *probably* ok, or *mostly* ok, try to get help anyways... if you really are fine, than the worst that can happen is they agree with you, right?

      This was a much bigger post than I intended, stranger/friend. And you may never see it or read it. I hope you do. I hope that you're not alone with your pain, and if you are, that maybe for a moment my words make you feel less so. And if you need it, I hope you decide my completely unsolicited advice is, instead of insulting, a kind-of tool, another way for you to help yourself.

    • If you're happy and relaxed, you sleep better, which helps you be happy and relaxed.
      If you're miserable and stressed, you sleep worse, which helps you be miserable and stressed.
      So much for self balancing systems. :/

      I find that I sleep better after (trying to) meditate. It's not easy but gets easier with practice. The point of meditation is to 1. relax and 2. focus, which is an excellent way to prepare the brain for sleep.

      The meditation method I'd suggest is to sit up straight (bad for your back and brea

    • by gr8dude (832945)

      I am sorry to hear that. I have had a similar experience, after a very painful breakup I went through the same process.

      The thing that caused it was the fact that I had no idea why it happened. So my days were spent asking "why? why? why?" - this was not very productive, the inner voice had no reasonable answer except "I did something wrong". Then it became "What did I do wrong?".

      What worked for me was the ability to understand what happened. I had to ask some really direct questions and get some really dire

  • But here's today's intriguing question: when are researchers going to notice the link between long-term sleep deprivation and (at least some forms of) Alzheimer’s Disease? I think that permanent damage can result from constant, chronic sleep deprivation.

  • I tell my students over and over every semester that a good night's sleep is just as important as studying. Not that they listen, but I still tell them.
    • by PPH (736903)

      Not that they listen,

      Because they are sleeping through your class.

  • That is why I have told all my acquaintances to always hibernate their computers instead of shutting down. Glad science is finally catching up to my powers of casual observations and inferences.

    wait, it is not about the computer memory, is it? Darn it.

  • I'm an insomniac and my short term memory gets horrible when I'm in a bad stretch of sleep problems.

  • I believe this is an evolutionary feature, not a bug. Otherwise parents would never have a second child.

    This mechanism explains how we forget the horrors of the first 6-8 weeks post-delivery and the hell that is sleep in 1.5 hour increments.
  • ...because sometimes I see things that I don't want to remember!

  • the link is broken :-(
  • It seems Berkeley have updated their timestamp for that article:

    You tried going to http://newscenter.berkeley.edu/2013/01/27/sleep-memory/ [berkeley.edu], and it doesn't exist. All is not lost! You can search for what you're looking for.

    The new link http://newscenter.berkeley.edu/2013/01/28/sleep-memory/ [berkeley.edu] points to yesterdays date rather than Sundays.

    Slashdot editors, please update the summary.

    Also, the study is about memory in old age in particular.

APL is a write-only language. I can write programs in APL, but I can't read any of them. -- Roy Keir

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