Researchers show why sleep cannot be replaced by rest during recovery of the brain

A research study conducted at the University of Freiburg shows why sleep cannot be replaced by rest during recovery of the brain following strenuous activity or performances.

The findings appeared in the journal Sleep.

In the study, researchers indicated how unused connections in the brain are weakened and relevant connections are strengthened.

The findings were established after having initiated an experiment among more than 60 participants. Three groups came out of the experiment: one group comprised of participants who were awake; the second group slept for 60 minutes; the third group had no sleep.

From Christoph Nissen, the study’s lead author: “Sleep is irreplaceable for the recovery of the brain. It cannot be replaced by periods of rest for improved performance. The state of the brain during sleep is unique.”

“This shows that it is sleep itself that makes the difference,” another co-author implied of the results.

The study showed that the sleep group performed remarkably better than the group with no sleep. The positive effects experienced by the one group was attributed to the function of deep-sleep activity and its vital role in the connectively of nerve cells.

The findings were released on January 6th, 2021.

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