The trick to putting names and faces together after meeting someone for the first time may be a good night’s sleep. That conclusion comes from a small study at Boston’s Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH). Researchers there recruited 14 young adults in their 20s to see how a good night’s sleep affects the ability to match names and faces. During the study the participants stayed at the hospital’s Center for Clinical Investigation. Each study volunteer was shown 20 photos of faces with names attached and asked to memorize them. After 12 hours, they were shown the photos again, matched with either a correct or incorrect name. The researchers asked if the name was correct and also asked the participants to rate their confidence in their answers. Each participant took the test twice, once after sleeping for eight hours and once when they had remained awake during the day. The investigators reported that after sleeping the participants correctly matched 12 percent more of the faces and names than when they had remained awake. The research team now wants to explore how sleep affects memory for names and faces among older adults.
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