What happens to our brain when we are sleeping?

Doctors recommend that the body needs eight hours of sleep daily in order to function effectively.

The brain is an essential organ, helping us figure things out during the day when we are awake and functional. But what your brain does when you're sleeping?

Naked Scientist Chris Smith explains what happens to the brain when we are sleeping, does it keep active or does it also sleep?

He says when we go to sleep our brain disengages from the body. It turns off the signals that would normally make us move so that you don't end up acting up your dreams. We go into a paralysed state, he says.

Read: Poor sleep can cause weight gain, says expert

There is evidence that if you sleep in a new environment, half of your brain turns to be more active on your first night. This is probably to increase your vigilance so that you can detect danger.

Chris Smith, Naked Scientist

Periodically you go through what we call REM sleep (Rapid Eye Movement).

Chris Smith, Naked Scientist

When people go into this phase, this is when they are dreaming. When we look at people in REM sleep their brain is incredibly active.

Chris Smith, Naked Scientist

We don't know why we do this and we don't know the role of sleep, we just know that it is fundamental to good health because if you deprive a human or an animal sleep it becomes very unhealthy.

Chris Smith, Naked Scientist

To hear more explanations on what happens to the brain during sleep, listen below:


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