This is not the first study which proved that day time seeping could mprove memory. In January, a study by researches form the University of Sheffield, Uk found that 30 minute nap within four hours of a learning task improved infants memory.
In the latest study the participants were shown alist of 90 words and 120 unrelated word pairs and were to learn them. A word pair for example will be ‘milk-taxi’.
The participants were split into two groups one group is the control group and other is the nap group.
The control group is the group who watched DVD’s and the other group is the group who took a nap.
Dr Alex Mecklinger, who supervised the study, says “because they have never heard this particular word combination before and it is essentially without meaning. They therefore need to access the specific memory of the corresponding episode in the hippocampus.”
After the learning task they were ask to completely a memory recall test then the control group was asked to watch DVD and the other group was asked to take nap for 90 minutes.
During the performance test it was noted that the nap group performed better in remembering the word pairs than the other group.
Hippocampus is the region of the brain in which memories are consolidated and it is the process by which previously learned information is transferred into long term memory storage.
The researchers examined ‘sleep spindles’ a particular brain activity which plays an important role in memory consolidation during sleep.
A sleep spindle is a short burst of rapid oscillations in the electrocenphalogram(EEG).
Dr. Mecklinger said, “We suspect that certain types of memory content, particularly information that was previously tagged, is preferentially consolidated during this type of brain activity.”
The greater the number of sleep spindles appearing in EEG, the stronger is the memory of the person.