Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Fears Can Be Healed During Sleep

A woman lies in her bed, looking fearful. 

It is possible to reduce people's fears by treating the fears while sleeping, a new study suggests.

The researchers conditioned 15 participants to be afraid of a specific image of a face by giving them an electric shock each time that face appeared among other face images they were viewing. Along with the face, the participants were also exposed to an odor, so they would associate the odor with their fear.

The participants then took a nap, during which they were exposed to the fear-triggering odor; however, this time they did not receive the associated shock. Once awakened, the results showed that people's fear of the face and odor they had learned to fear had diminished, even though they had no memory of smelling the odor while they slept, according to a study published Sunday (Sept. 22) in the journal Nature Neuroscience. 

For the rest of the story: http://www.livescience.com/39860-fear-treatment-during-sleep.html

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