Why We Really Need Sleep

Most people understand that sleep is essential to our lives. Until now, however, the mechanical reasons for its importance haven’t been completely clear. Scientists have just reported major findings on why our brains, in particular, need to sleep. It turns out that certain cleaning mechanisms perform better when we shut down our brains. Much like a dump truck cruising city streets during pre-dawn hours with less traffic, brain cleaners also work best when there’s less going on.

According to a researcher at the University of Rochester: “This study shows that the brain has different functional states when asleep and when awake. In fact, the restorative nature of sleep appears to be the result of the active clearance of the by-products of neural activity that accumulate during wakefulness.”

It’s common scientific knowledge that our brains consolidate memories during sleep and perform other important functions. Further, that resting allows our muscles, bones, and organs to repair themselves, and keeps our immune system healthy. We know that sleep does all of these things, but until now we didn’t know any of the specific changes that drive these benefits.

Charles Czeisler, a sleep researcher at Harvard Medical School, concludes this is the “first direct experimental evidence at the molecular level” for why we need to sleep. The paper was published in the journal Science on Oct. 17.

The importance of sleep inspired the development of Silent Nights*, one of LifeWave’s most popular patch products. With no pharmaceutical drugs or pills to take, Silent Nights is clinically shown to increase length of sleep by 66 percent.

*Learn more about Silent Nights in the EU.