Stay Awake to Forgo Unpleasant Memories!

Recommend to others!

Crisis occurs almost any time of the day, any season of the year. It affects people in all aspects of his life. In fact, the National Institute of Mental Health says that “there are many different responses to crisis. Most survivors have intense feelings after a traumatic event but recover from the trauma; others have more difficulty recovering — especially those who have had previous traumatic experiences, who are faced with ongoing stress, or who lack support from friends and family — and will need additional help. “

A current study at UMass Amherst, which included polysomnography and neuroscientists, puts forward that, emotional memories are always protected by our brain, during sleep. Some sleep researchers from University of Massachusetts Amherst conducted a study recently. They put forward that, if an individual sleeps after witnessing a traumatic event or an unsettling picture, there is much likelihood that the sleep will preserve the unpleasant negative emotions. The emotional response of an individual gets reduced if the individual stays awake after the unsettling picture. Further if there is an occurrence of a flashback memory, it will be upsetting as it was the first time for those individuals who slept after witnessing such traumatic event as compared to those who did not sleep.

The study says, “If one witnesses something disturbing, like an accident and then that individual has a flashback or he is asked to look or imagine the same scene later, his emotional response will be greatly reduced. This is because he stayed awake after the original event. But had he slept after witnessing the original event, his emotional response would have been the same or more”. It is very interesting to know that after witnessing a traumatic event, it is general to be sleep deprived, since the brain does not demand sleep. This study got published in the current issue of Journal of Neuroscience.

Another experiment was conducted by Spencer and colleagues, which involved 38 healthy males and 68 females. In their study they found that sleep had imperative consequence on the memories and feelings of the participants.  During this experiment the researchers also found that contrary to previous assumptions, affect of sleep on memory and emotion are totally independent. They concluded that “how sleep protects the unpleasant emotional responses and the emotional memory” are questions which remain unanswered. Sleep in fact protects emotional memory and it preserves and increases the unpleasant memories. Hence the researchers ask the individuals to stay awake and forego the unpleasant memories.




Speak Your Mind


Current day month ye@r *