Are you mastering a new skill or picking up on an old trick? Sleep on it! The brain produces sharp waves while you sleep, allowing it to store new information and strengthen memory as the body rests.
Declarative and Procedural Memory
Motor and Visual Learning
Apneas tend to last longer and occur more frequently during rapid eye movement (REM) sleep (2).
Saving in Progress
Every night, while catching up on your Zs, the hippocampus is providing a detailed play-by-play on new information and experiences to the neocortex (1). As this information is reviewed, long-term memory is formed.
Sleep Apnea results in repeated drops of oxygen during sleep forcing the brain’s blood vessels to constrict. A lack of oxygen in the tissue can cause cells to die. Therefore, more apneic episodes lead to a higher cell loss, which negatively impacts memory.
CPAP to the Rescue
Research suggests that using CPAP consistently and regularly improves memory performance. By helping you sleep through the night and providing your brain with the necessary oxygen, memory abilities impaired by OSA can be recouped.
A study regarding performance on an overnight picture memory task showed that those with OSA who use CPAP had better memory than those who don’t use CPAP. Even more, they outperformed those without Sleep Apnea! (3)
Tips to Remember
A good night‘s sleep- before and after learning- increases the ability to concentrate and understand information.
Using CPAP for six hours or more per night makes it eight times more likely to have normal memory abilities (4).
CPAP restores oxygen levels, maintaining more brain cells available to process information and form memories.
Replace your equipment on time by setting email reminders in your account.
(1) “Sleep Keeps Important Memories Safe” - CNN Health, 2011 (source).
(2) “Management of Obstructive Sleep Apnoea Syndrome”- M. Johns, 1997 (source).
(3) “Sleep 2010”- Associated Professional Sleep Societies, LLC, 2010 (source).
(4) “Working Memory in Obstructive Sleep Apnea: Construct Validity and Treatment
Effects“ - Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine, 2007 (source).