Research

Sleep is a very complex process consisting of 19 phases

Around the 1930s, it is known that sleep is dividedon four phases: three of them belong to the stage of slow sleep, and one - to the stage of fast. These findings were made by scientists during the study of brain waves using electroencephalography, but thanks to magnetic resonance imaging, scientists were able to identify 19 more phases that were not fixed earlier. A new study of the phases of sleep can be considered the most detailed in the whole story - its results allowed scientists to take a fresh look at both the sleep process itself and insomnia.

To identify new phases, scientists have scored a groupvolunteers from 57 healthy people. They were placed in the MRI scanner, which were for 52 minutes. Since the eyes were closed, some of them were able to fall asleep for a short time - even during this short period of time, the researchers managed to identify a bunch of different biochemical processes of the brain. For this purpose, both data from a magnetic resonance tomograph and an electroencephalographic apparatus were used.

Dividing the brain activity into different groups,Scientists have identified at least 19 phases, previously unknown. All of them pass between wakefulness and slow sleep. According to Professor Angus Stevner of Aarhus University, the results of their research finally gave a more modern description of human sleep. It is high time for humanity to abandon the simplified picture of brain activity during human rest and realize that sleep is a complex process with many neuronal activities.

The discovery made it possible to take a fresh look at suchsleep disorders like insomnia. This problem affects the lives of millions of people, so it is possible that in the future, scientists will develop more effective methods to eliminate them.

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