‘Sleeping on it’ really does help and four other recent sleep research breakthroughs

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'Sleeping on it' really does help and four other recent sleep research breakthroughs
'Sleeping on it' really does help and four other recent sleep research breakthroughs

Africa-Press – Cape verde. Twenty-six years.

That is roughly how much of our lives are spent asleep.

Scientists have been trying to explain why we spend so much time sleeping since at least the ancient Greeks, but pinning down the exact functions of sleep has proven to be difficult.

During the past decade, there has been a surge of interest from researchers in the nature and function of sleep. New experimental models coupled with advances in technology and analytical techniques are giving us a deeper look inside the sleeping brain. Here are some of the biggest recent breakthroughs in the science of sleep.

1. We know more about lucid dreaming

No longer on the fringes, the neuroscientific study of dreaming has now become mainstream.

US researchers in a 2017 study woke their participants up at regular intervals during the night and asked them what was going through their minds prior to the alarm call. Sometimes participants couldn’t recall any dreaming. The study team then looked at what was happening in the participant’s brain moments before waking.

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