Does Brain Function Differ for Morning People and Night Owls?

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Do you feel most productive in the morning or are you livelier at night?  This question may determine how your brain functions.

According to this article from the University of Alberta, eighteen study participants were placed in groups based on their sleeping habits. Participants were studied using multiple techniques including electrical stimulation, trans-cranial magnetic stimulation, and muscle measurements.

Graduate student Alex Tamm says, “In morning people, their cortical excitability actually decreased throughout the day. It was highest in the morning and lowest in the evening.”

Night owls had the opposite brain activity. The article notes higher brain activity at 9 p.m. Muscle tests demonstrated that evening people also became physically stronger throughout the day, while early risers didn’t fare as well.

With these findings, researchers hope to discover implications for shift work. They hope to study how difficult it is for an evening person to work a morning shift and exist in the opposite environment.

The Villa Orlando and Pasadena Villa’s Smoky Mountain Lodge are adult intensive psychiatric residential treatment centers for clients with serious mental illnesses. We also provide other individualized therapy programs, step-down residential programs, and less intensive mental health services, such as Community Residential Homes, Supportive Housing, Day Treatment Programs and Life Skills training. Pasadena Villa’s Outpatient Center in Raleigh, North Carolina offers partial hospitalization (PHP) and an intensive outpatient program (PHP). If you or someone you know may need mental health services, please complete our contact form or call us at 407-574-5190 for more information.



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