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Babies Grow Up in Their Sleep - 2

Fetuses Sleep As Well

It is difficult to study whether fetuses sleep or not. When we look into the brain waves of a fetus more than 36 weeks in the uterus, however, we can see their patterns of awakening and sleep. The cerebral cortex which is important for people's mental functionalities is well developed by that time, and the fetus reacts to various stimuli and is able to keep itself awake.

Prior to this, only those functions directly related to the survival like circulatory functions have developed; as the brain develops, so do the mental functions as human beings.

We should probably not argue that fetuses are sleeping or awake from their pattern of brain waves, since it is believed that the sleep of a fetus is, of course, different from that of ours. However, the essence of sleep is something that is indispensable for the survival of human beings. Therefore the sleep of a fetus is also supposed to be important for their mental development.

In this way to sleep is not something which is quite simple. It is obvious that there is a big life mechanism behind this. In fact the growth hormone is secreted immediately after REM sleep changes to non-REM sleep, when the high-pressure slow waves of the brain are observed. Therefore at this point the blood concentration of the growth hormone increases very sharply like a spike.

Peaceful sleep of a baby is an expression of healthy biorhythm, showing that the baby is completely satisfied.

It is very true that babies grow up in their sleep.

Kobayashi, Noboru (1981). "Neruko wa Sodatsu - 2." (written in Japanese). Tokyo: Child Research Net. Retrieved Jan. 9, 2004, from the World Wide Web http://www.crn.or.jp/LIBRARY/KOBY/MIRAI/cbs0108.html
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