One Consequence of Lack of Sleep? False Memories: Study

Study finds sleep-deprived participants more likely to misremember details
By Newsy, a Newser Video Partner
Posted Jul 27, 2014 2:48 PM CDT

(Newser) – Sleep deprivation isn't good for any part of your body, but a new study says it can take a really devastating toll on your memory—finding loss of sleep can leave people with false or inaccurate memories. To get the results, researchers at Michigan State University and the University of California, Irvine, attempted to suggest fake memories to sleep-deprived subjects, in order to see how accurate their recollection was. The experiment's 104 participants were asked to look at photos of a crime—half saw them on the night before the experiment, half on the next morning. Half of each group got a good night's sleep, while the other half was kept wide awake; then, each subject read a story about the pictures laced with misinformation, and was quizzed on what they remembered from the photos. Researchers found the participants who were sleep deprived throughout the whole experiment—seeing the photos and hearing the false narrative—were the most likely to misremember details or recall false information.

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