There have been claims that the brain goes offline when one is sleeping. Other studies have proven that the medulla can be put to task immediately when a person is falling asleep and when one is sleeping. According to these studies, humans are being far from being entirely shut down from what is happening during sleep. These studies showed that it was only possible to survey the brain during sleep.
A research was done using 18 participants with scalp sensors to sense the brain waves. The participants listened to a list of words; were animals and objects. They were then directed to press a button using their left hand once they denoted the word animal and the right hand if the word denoted an object.
The second research was conducted on a number of volunteered students with the same scalp sensors to sense their brains. They were given a list of two languages English and Germany. They were to use their right hand to push the button if the word they hear was English and their left hand when they hear a Germany word.
The third result involved twelve volunteers who were to listen to a musical tune of two different songs. They were to react by pressing their right hand button if the tune was salsa and their left hand button if the tune was jazz.
During the research, the volunteer’s brain waves were monitored to determine which of their nerves cells were reacting during the experiment. The same studies were conducted after the participants were moved to a dark house that could make them fall asleep. When they were asleep, another list containing similar items was dictated to them aloud. Amazingly, they observed the same reactions from the nerves that were triggered while they were awake began to trigger the buttons. Since they were asleep, they could not move but the brain showed similar results as it was when they were awake (Bear, Connors & Paradiso, 2007).
These studies were seen to prove that people could use their brains while they were asleep. Although the experts are not sure of how much work the brain can handle while a person is sleeping, they assume that performing simple calculations while asleep might continue working on a problem.
Bear, M. F., Connors, B. W., & Paradiso, M. A. (2007). Neuroscience: Exploring the brain. Philadelphia, PA: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins