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Effects of Sleep after Experimental Trauma on Intrusive Emotional Memories


Kleim, Birgit; Wysokowsky, Julia; Schmid, Nuria; Seifritz, Erich; Rasch, Björn (2016). Effects of Sleep after Experimental Trauma on Intrusive Emotional Memories. Sleep, 39(12):2125-2132.

Abstract

STUDY OBJECTIVES: To investigate sleep's effect in the immediate aftermath of experiencing an analog trauma in the laboratory on reducing intrusive emotional memory formation.

METHODS: Sixty-five healthy women were exposed to an experimental laboratory trauma. They viewed a neutral and a trauma film in the laboratory and were randomly allocated to either a group that slept following film viewing or a group that remained awake. Sleep was recorded with electroencephalogram in a subgroup of participants in the sleep group. All participants recorded intrusive memories in the week following the film.

RESULTS: The sleep group experienced fewer and less distressing intrusive trauma memories compared to the wake group. These effects were particularly evident toward the end of the week. Duration spent in stage N2 as opposed to light N1 sleep, a higher number of fast parietal sleep spindles and a lower rapid eye movement sleep density predicted intrusion frequency.

CONCLUSIONS: Our results have clinical implications and set the ground for early-intervention sleep studies following trauma and prevention of chronic posttrauma disorders.

Abstract

STUDY OBJECTIVES: To investigate sleep's effect in the immediate aftermath of experiencing an analog trauma in the laboratory on reducing intrusive emotional memory formation.

METHODS: Sixty-five healthy women were exposed to an experimental laboratory trauma. They viewed a neutral and a trauma film in the laboratory and were randomly allocated to either a group that slept following film viewing or a group that remained awake. Sleep was recorded with electroencephalogram in a subgroup of participants in the sleep group. All participants recorded intrusive memories in the week following the film.

RESULTS: The sleep group experienced fewer and less distressing intrusive trauma memories compared to the wake group. These effects were particularly evident toward the end of the week. Duration spent in stage N2 as opposed to light N1 sleep, a higher number of fast parietal sleep spindles and a lower rapid eye movement sleep density predicted intrusion frequency.

CONCLUSIONS: Our results have clinical implications and set the ground for early-intervention sleep studies following trauma and prevention of chronic posttrauma disorders.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > Psychiatric University Hospital Zurich > Clinic for Psychiatry, Psychotherapy, and Psychosomatics
06 Faculty of Arts > Institute of Psychology
Dewey Decimal Classification:150 Psychology
Language:English
Date:1 December 2016
Deposited On:14 Feb 2018 09:46
Last Modified:13 Apr 2018 11:37
Publisher:American Academy of Sleep Medicine
ISSN:0161-8105
OA Status:Closed
Free access at:Publisher DOI. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.5665/sleep.6310
PubMed ID:27748249

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