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As time goes on, we are finding more evidence to support the importance of sleep to our physical and mental health. A study has now found that lack of sleep can even increase your chances of having false memories.
False memories are ones in which you swear you remember something that never actually happened – or you remember details that are different than what actually happened.
In a study published in Psychological Science, it was found that study subjects who had 5 hours of sleep or less were more likely to say they’d seen a news video they never actually watched. Study subjects with 5 hours of sleep or less were also more likely to accept false suggestions given to them by researchers.
Two limitations to the study were that the subjects reported their hours of sleep (self-report has an issue with accuracy), and there were 193 subjects.
The issue of sleep deprivation and false memories is an important one, especially in legal cases. Can sleep deprivation cause someone to make a false confession? One study says it’s possible.
Author: Stephanie Sarkis