are two different types
of spindles. One is recorded at 12hertz and is
known as a slow spindle.
The other is a fast
spindle and is recorded at
14 hertz. Hertz is the scale used to measure electromagnetic waves of
any kind. Hertz equals one cycle per second.
existence of electromagnetic waves was first mathematically discovered
by James Clerk Maxwell in 1884. It was not until 1885 that Heinrich
Rudolf Hertz completed extensive testing in his laboratory and was able
to create measurable electromagnetic waves. It was named after him as a
tribute because he was the first person not only to prove their
existence, but also to be able to measure and collect useful data.
spindles and K-complexes
are two of the most dominating markers in
stage two sleep patterns. They are characteristically linked with non
sleep. When tested, key areas of the brain like the insular
cortices, superior temporal gyrus, anterior cingulated cortex and
thalamus have shown activation due to spindles.
spindles are viewed as a burst
of activity in the brain. Researchers
have come to believe that this activity is the brain learning, and
teaching itself which muscles can be controlled by different nerves.
This happens more at a younger age because the body is still developing
simple tasks like hand movements are complex functions that have to be
learned by the brain. During the day, the mind does not have as much
time to focus on educating itself, as it is busy performing other
tasks. Therefore, it
does a lot of catching up throughout the night as we sleep.
develop at low amplitudes
about six weeks after birth. This is thought
to be one reason why babies can twitch in their sleep. Research has
suggested that it could be a direct result of the brain waves
conducting a learning process as they are resting. Premature babies do
not have normal brain waves and spindles, as their brain has not had
the required time to develop fully at this stage.
well as learning while sleeping, the brain will also use this time to
process new information and integrate it with knowledge that already
sleep spindles can occur when cells in the mind interact
to process information.
may be why it is so important that you get the medically recommended
amount of sleep every night.
8 to 10 hours sleep per night
so that the brain can work through all the processes that occur in the
5 stage sleep
more sleep you get each night, the more cycles
you can allow the brain to run through.
the Sleep Spindle is Related to Intelligence
evidence suggests that the spindle can be linked with intellectual
ability and could be a sign of intelligence. An IQ, or
quotient, is derived from several tests and the results are often used
to predict educational ability.
people will average a score between 70 and 130. New research shows that
it is possible for a person who has a higher frequency of spindles to
score higher than the average person on an IQ test.
brain never stops working and will continue to do so every day. If a
person's brain was to show no electro-activity whatsoever, then this
person would be declared 'brain dead' and that condition is
irreversible. The heart can continue to function at a slow pace but
breathing would not be possible as the respiratory system will not
spindles made in the thalamus can help the sleeping process in a
situation when external
noises could cause a person to wake up.
who produce more frequent or greater amounts of spindles than the
average person require a higher decibel noise level to be roused out of
a sound sleep.
could be considered a real advantage to achieving proper sleep if you
and your partner do not share the same sleeping hours. During the
second stage of sleep your body is preparing to drift into a deeper
sleep phase but is not quite there yet. As the body temperature cools
and the heart rate slows, the body relaxes more and the brain tries to
ensure you are not woken up so that you can move into the third stage
brain wave studies have shown that the amount of spindles being
produced during sleep may predict how deeply a person can sleep with a
lot of surrounding noise. As
we age, we produce fewer
spindles and are more sensitive to noises around us. This
can be one of
the explanations why older people don't seem to sleep as well.
schizophrenia patient will have different brain waves and will not show
a normal pattern of both slow and fast spindles. This is because they
will generally suffer from hallucinations,
and a breakdown of
people with schizophrenia will experience sleep problems at some point
in their life and many do not have a regular sleep pattern at all. This
can be a result of the drugs they are taking to combat their mental
illness or because of a lack of consistent routine during the
extremely important to ensure our body gets the correct amount of rest it
requires to function properly. The brain needs this time to
recuperate and process important information it has received during the
day. A good night of quality sleep can only benefit both your mental
and physical health.