It’s not the first time being said that sleep plays a huge role in brain wellness, but how the brain benefits from it was quite vague for science.
The bliss of sleep does the ‘dirty work’ for the brain, getting rid of all the built-up toxins acquired during busy days. The sleep-induced process of detoxification may hinder the onset of Alzheimer.
Until now, it was not clear what’s the link between memory impairment and sleep, but recently, researchers found out that slow brain waves and active fluids ‘wipes off the dust’ of toxins while we’re sleeping.
The breakthrough could lay the foundation of a new type of prevention and treatment for Alzheimer’s.
Scientists Examined Sleeping Volunteers
The team of scientists asked volunteers to sleep in a less usual place – a MRI machine – while they could assess their brain activity.
They noticed that during sleep the brain is more active than before. The neurons sync up, switching on and off simultaneously, the blood flow drops, and the cerebrospinal fluid removes the accumulation of waste.The study author, Laura Lewis, added:
Before each wave of fluid, we would actually see a wave of electrical activity in the neurons. This electrical wave always happens first, and the CSF wave always seems to follow seconds later.
The bran tiding process is initiated only by the deep sleep, not brief light nap, and this may explain why people with disruptive sleep patterns face difficulties recalling names or events.
The onset of Alzheimer’s reduces the number of slow waves during sleep, which pushes the brain to overstore a protein called tau and beta-amyloid. Scientists attempted to find proper medication for this build-up, but the new discovery may suggest that the brain just needs a good rest to stay young.
The study stages and results, as well as additional information, can be reached in the journal Science Magazine, one of the world’s top academic journals.