New Zealand's Natural Therapies Website
e.g. yoga, naturopath
e.g. Kelston, Auckland

Visit us on Facebook

Hitwise Award Winner


eg.Marlborough or 629 (not both)

Turns Out You Can't Learn in Your Sleep


Turns Out You Can't Learn in Your Sleep

It’s often been said you can learn in your sleep. But a new study has revealed it’s not as effective as we first thought.
Published in Scientific Reports, the Université libre de Bruxelles study found that while your brain can still spot sounds when you sleep, it’s pretty rubbish at organising them in a sequence.
To test their theory, the research team used magnetoencephalography (MEG) to see how the brain makes sense of sounds during slow wave sleep.
While hypnopedia (the ability to learn in your sleep) has been debunked in recent years – despite proving popular in Aldous Huxley’s ‘Brave New World’ – there’s been a serious lack of investigation into whether the brain can continue complex learning during sleep.

How was the discovery made?

The team used MEG to record brain activity when a group of 21 participants were in slow wave sleep, and when they were awake. While asleep, they were exposed to rapid flows of sound in a way that the brain could group them.
But during sleep, the brain was only able to pinpoint the individual sounds – and it didn’t respond to sound sequences. Researchers say this is due to the “deactivation of higher processing brain structures”.

What does this mean?

Well, it’s bad news for exam crammers: you probably won’t learn much in your sleep that will help you score big on your next test.
The best thing to do? Prepare as normal, and let sleep be a time for rest, relaxation, and restoration. So that when exams do roll around, you feel fresh, clear-headed, and in top cognitive condition.
And if you’re struggling to sleep? Be sure to see your healthcare professional or a natural therapist who can help you hit the hay soundly. You can of course start your search right here on ntpages.

  Printer Friendly Version

Related Modalities

  Children’s Health
  Men's Health
  Women's Health