Scented naps can dissipate fears

People unlearned an odor's unpleasant accompaniment when they smelled it in their sleep

By Laura Sanders, 13:01 PM September 22, 2013

A nap can ease the burden of a painful memory. While fast asleep, people learned that a previously scary situation was no longer threatening, scientists report September 22 in Nature Neuroscience.

The results are the latest to show that sleep is a special state in which many sorts of learning can happen. And the particular sort of learning in the new study blunted a fear memory, a goal of treatments for disorders such as phobias and post-traumatic stress disorder.

“It’s a remarkable finding,” s...

Source URL: https://www.sciencenews.org/article/scented-naps-can-dissipate-fears?mode=magazine&context=187368