ISSN 1671-3710
CN 11-4766/R

Advances in Psychological Science ›› 2021, Vol. 29 ›› Issue (7): 1251-1263.doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1042.2021.01251

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How does sleep affect creative problem-solving: An interpretation based on memory reorganization

WANG Zhengyu, HU Jinsheng   

  1. Department of Psychology, Liaoning Normal University, Dalian 116029, China
  • Received:2020-10-18 Online:2021-07-15 Published:2021-05-24

Abstract: Sleep boosts creative problem-solving by promoting memory reorganization, which is the focus of this review. Studies have shown that rapid eye movement sleep mainly facilitates novel associations, while non-rapid eye movement sleep facilitates the abstraction of rules, the formation of relational memory, and the integration of memories. However, several factors have been shown to moderate the impact of sleep on creative problem-solving; these include sleep structure changes, the manipulation of information processing during sleep, and task types. In the existing theoretical mechanisms, the spreading activation model has gradually been replaced by the mechanisms at the systemic and cellular levels, including hippocampal- neocortex dialogue, synaptic plasticity, and the overlapping memory replay during sleep. Future studies should broaden the scope of research by transforming problem types. Moreover, efforts should be focused on emotional memory and the cross-modal transfer of memories during sleep to deepen the mechanism research.

Key words: sleep, memory reorganization, creative problem-solving

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