When deadlines are piling up, skimping on sleep in order to gain time and meet our deadlines may seem like a good idea, right? ‘Wrong’, say researchers at New York University School of Medicine (USA) and Peking University Shenzhen Graduate School (China), especially when the tasks we need to perform involve retaining learning (students, listen up!). During the deep sleep phases of our slumbers, the brain moves memories from short-term into long-term storage, freeing up short-term memory space for the next day. The brain ‘replays’ activity from the day and forms new connections between neurones. If we do not get adequate sleep, the memories formed during the day, that information that you have worked hard to cram into your brain, are in danger of being lost. Additionally, deep sleep occurs more early in the night. So for maximum retention, get enough sleep and go to bed early.
Source: BBC News 5/06/2015 Sleep’s memory role discovered