I am going to post this and apologize now for any crazy typos, spelling
errors, etc due to smart phone issues:
Do not cram for exams by denying yourself sleep. Seriously. There are studies available which prove that cramming for an exam and not allowing proper sleep actually decreases your ability to focus and recall. But why, you say? You've spent the last nineteen hours with your nose in a text book...how on Earth could the knowledge not
be in there?
Simple. Your body, and in this scenario, your brain needs a boost from a little something called REM sleep. You know...the dream phase where amazing and sometimes terrifyingly bizarre (ever been chased through Vegas by rabid Hostess products? I have. Throwing quarters at them did nothing.) flutter through your mind's eye?
Don't get me wrong, nREM plays a role as well: specifically stage three sleep which has the most Delta waves and is sometimes referred to as "slow wave" sleep. Think of all the knowledge you collect during the course of your day as documents. In nREM, the brain compiles and sorts the documents in preparation for filing. Yay!
REM is the point of the night where the mind takes all the new data it collected and actually converts it from short term to long term memory, essentially filing it away for later use. Boo yeah.
So CheesePotato, when does REM sleep happen?
Funny you should ask. REM sleep doesn't typically happen until a person has been asleep for around 90 minutes. The first REM cycle is short, but it gets the job done.
The moral of the story? Go ahead and study...but unless you want all those lovely mental documents to flutter away on the breeze of a brain fart, I highly recommend catching at least a two hour nap.
Lecture concluded. Now back to your regularly scheduled broadcasting.