Essay on How Does Sleep Affect Our Memory?

Essay on How Does Sleep Affect Our Memory?

Length: 859 words (2.5 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Better Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

As living animals, we all experience a phenome known as sleep. Although we all experience sleep, very little is known about it, especially when it comes to how it affects memory. As college students, sleep is vital to our health and wellbeing, we need the right amount of sleep to be able to be awake and attentive during classes. But the question remains, how does sleep affect our memory? Does the lack of sleep a person is getting make it harder for their brains to process and store information? While researching this topic, I came across some information that might help us to better understand just exactly how sleep affects our memory.
Firstly, is there a specific amount of sleep that a person needs to acquire to help maintain memory activity? In a study done at the Harvard Medical School, the conducted a survey to find out if there is a certain number of hours of sleep that are needed to maintain memory. For this experiment, a group of women takin part in the Nurses’ Health Study were asked about their sleeping habits in 1986 to 2000. These women were then interviewed about their memory and thinking skills three times over a six- year period (Harvard Medical School). It was observed that the test subjects who had five hours of sleep or less, along with those who got over nine hours of sleep, performed worse on brain testing compared to the women who got seven to eight hours of sleep (Harvard Medical School). From their study, the Harvard Medical School found that getting an average amount of sleep, seven hours per day, may help maintain memory in later life and that clinical interventions based on sleep therapy should be examined for the prevention of mental impairment (Harvard Medical School).
Secondly, memory is an importa...


... middle of paper ...


... next day, when asked to recall the cards, the researchers found that there was no difference between the two groups. The group with only four hours of sleep were able to recall the cards just as well as the group who got eight hours of sleep (Magaldi). However, when the subjects were put under stress the results changed significantly. While asking the participants to recall a new set of cards, they were exposed to loud noises. While under stress, the group who received four hours of sleep showed an overall reduction of in their ability to access long-term memory by ten percent (Magaldi). From their studies, the researchers concluded that sleep is an important aspect in our lives. Since everyday life can be stressful it is important for our minds to be fully rested in order to be able to process the information being presented and react accordingly to the situation.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

How Does Sleep Affect Memory Consolidation? Essays

- Is sleep important for memory consolidation. Past research has found that sleep is an important factor in the consolidation of newly acquired memories; however, this consolidation often depends on the specific memory as well as when (e.g., time after learning) sleep occurs. It is important to note that sleep is not constant, throughout the night. Sleep is a cycle that is broken down into rapid eye movement (REM) and non-rapid eye movement (non-REM) sleep (Stickgold, 2005). Non-REM consists of sleep stages 1 through 4, in which stages 3 and 4 constitute what is known as slow-wave sleep (SWS) (Rasch & Born, 2008)....   [tags: Medical Research]

Better Essays
1684 words (4.8 pages)

Memory And Memory Of Memory Essay examples

- What is Memory Memory is the information we stored in our brain. There are three types of memory. First is the sensory memory is the shortest term of memory which only last less than a second, it is our ability to hold the information from our 5 senses after we the original stimulus is gone. Short term memory is the information we hold in our mind for a short period which is less than a minute. Long term memory is the information that store in our brain for a long period of time. There are two types of long term memory, which are explicit memory(conscious) and implicit memory(unconscious)....   [tags: Memory, Sleep, Hippocampus, Episodic memory]

Better Essays
1252 words (3.6 pages)

Sleep Deprivation And Its Affect On People Essay

- Sleep Deprivation Interview any group of college students, and the likelihood of discovering efficacious sleep habits within this group is slim. Between engineering students who stay up until all hours designing and programming, to art students who prioritize late night drawing habits, to nursing students who stay up stress-cramming for major tests each week, sleep is something that has a tendency to be low on the priority levels in today’s collegiate society. Sleep deprivation and general sleep health is a topic that has concerned and affected all people for years....   [tags: Sleep deprivation, Sleep, Sleep disorder]

Better Essays
889 words (2.5 pages)

Relationship Between The Sleep Amount And Its Effect On One 's Memory And Amount Of Information Retained

- The topic for my research is to understand the relationship between the sleep amount and its effect on one’s memory and amount of information retained. Considering the fact that so many first year students including myself went through a big change this year from high school and under peer- pressure believed in cramming and studying most of the time in libraries until late night before exams and still not receiving the results we hoped for, I wanted to look into these two variables personally. Regardless of age group, I want to just understand the the relationship between my independent variable sleep amount (in hours) and dependent variable memory/ information retained (in generic units i.e...   [tags: Sleep, Sleep deprivation, Memory, Sleep disorder]

Better Essays
2138 words (6.1 pages)

The Sleep Cycle Of A Mammal Essay example

- The ability of mammals to correctly adapt their behavior to an environment that is always changing is a fundamental capability by the formation and retrieval of memories. Arguably one of the most important phases in the sleep cycle of a mammal is known as Rapid Eye Movement or REM sleep. Research suggests that REM plays a crucial role in the consolidation of memories essentially the processing of memories in our system; mainly our declarative memory system. The more familiar of the two to humans would be our declarative memory....   [tags: Hippocampus, Memory, Sleep, Declarative memory]

Better Essays
1101 words (3.1 pages)

Sleep And Learning Lab Report Essay

- Sleep and Learning Lab In this lab we studied the effects of sleep on learning. Using what we have learned in class, we know that the normal sleep period for adults is around an average of 7-8 hours a night. What we wanted to determine by the use of this lab was to show how changing the amount of sleep we get at night might affect our cognitive performance the next day. We can assume that having more or less sleep than the norm, definitely has an effect on our learning, specifically on our short term memory but what our study was designed to test was whether that is a positive or negative effect....   [tags: Sleep, Memory, Short-term memory]

Better Essays
2955 words (8.4 pages)

The Effect Of Sleep Deprivation On False Memory Formation Essay

- One of the most interesting phenomenon related to memory is memory distortions. One way in which they occur is through suggestibility, where people begin to remember false experiences if researchers suggested to them that they experienced it (Sternberg and Sternberg, 2012). In real-life situations, this is caused in part by memory being constructive “in that prior experiences affects how we recall things and what we actually recall from memory” (Sternberg and Sternberg, 2012). People’s prior experiences, including their bias and expectations, may influence how they experience false memory formations; the formation of false memories is also affected by several possible factors, one of which m...   [tags: Memory, Sleep, Sleep deprivation, Amnesia]

Better Essays
1238 words (3.5 pages)

Essay on College Students And Sleep Deprivation

- College students and sleep deprivation Ever since the scientific studies of sleep deprivation among college students has been a problem for many years because of the lack of sleep, the average student receives per night. The lack of a college students good night sleep has been a major issue for college students because it has known that this behavior can cause problems with their well doing in their academics. In recent studies, the average college students get less than seven hours of sleep per night (Porter)....   [tags: Sleep, Sleep deprivation, Sleep disorder]

Better Essays
1305 words (3.7 pages)

Essay on Sleep Is A Condition Of The Mind And Body

- Sleep is a condition of the mind and body in which the nervous system is relatively inactive, the eyes are closed, the muscles are relaxed and consciousness is practically suspended. On average a person needs between seven and nine hours of sleep, which can be hard to achieve with the stresses of life. Sleep can drastically affect how the mind functions. Studies have found that a lack of sleep can decrease motor skills and affect a persons memory. Among memory and motor skills, lack of sleep can negatively affect cognition....   [tags: Sleep, Sleep deprivation, Rapid eye movement sleep]

Better Essays
1488 words (4.3 pages)

Sleep Patterns And Academic Performance Essay

- Sleep is an essential of basic human functioning. Sufficient sleep duration is necessary for the best possible performance. There are three types of sleeping patterns. “Monophasic is sleeping once for more than 6 hours every 24 hours, biphasic (sleeping twice every 24 hours) and polyphasic (taking multiple naps per day)” (Saeed, 2015). These varieties in sleep patterns can affect memory, affecting students in their studies. The purpose of the study was to see what sleep pattern of students produced the most passing grades....   [tags: Sleep, Circadian rhythm, Sleep disorder]

Better Essays
1188 words (3.4 pages)