Although the basic functions are the same, memory works differently for everyone. Certain tricks to remember things may work great for one person, yet prove ineffective for someone else. Sleeping well and getting enough rest is one memory-enhancing trick that works for everyone though.
How a Memory is Made
Memories are formed through a three-step process. First, you gather the information. Next, you consolidate and organize the information while sleeping. Finally, your mind creates access points, or paths to your memories. The more you follow that path, like a deer through the forest, the more defined the path gets and the easier you can access the information.
When you lose sleep, your brain loses the time it needs to perform those necessary actions of consolidation and organization and to make connections. You can’t remember information that hasn’t been properly processed. You may forget things you tried to remember or find that you can’t recall the details later.
How Sleep Helps
Your body goes through three stages when sleeping. In the first five to 15 minutes, you sleep lightly and can be easily awakened. As your heart rate slows and your temperature drops, your body hits the second stage and prepares for deep sleep. Finally, you hit deep sleep where your body can get to work repairing and restoring various systems and processing memories.
If you don’t hit that deep sleep or stay in that stage long enough, your body may not have adequate time to form and shape memories. A memory foam mattress can help you rest in comfort and fall into those deeper stages of sleep.