An overnight therapy session…without a therapist

Today I point you toward a fascinating review article by Walker and van der Helm looking at the crucial function of sleep on emotional regulation. Here is a snippet of their abstract:

An overnight therapy session...without a therapistThis review surveys an array of diverse findings across basic and clinical research domains, resulting in a convergent view of sleep-dependent emotional brain processing. On the basis of the unique neurobiology of sleep, the authors outline a model describing the overnight modulation of affective neural systems and the (re)processing of recent emotional experiences, both of which appear to redress the appropriate next-day reactivity of limbic and associated autonomic networks. Furthermore, a rapid eye movement (REM) sleep hypothesis of emotional-memory processing is proposed, the implications of which may provide brain-based insights into the association between sleep abnormalities and the initiation and maintenance of mood disturbances.

Sleep FTW!

Walker, M., & van der Helm, E. (2009). Overnight therapy? The role of sleep in emotional brain processing. Psychological Bulletin, 135 (5), 731-748 DOI: 10.1037/a0016570

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