Our bodies do most of their healing, restorative work during sleep, such as producing growth hormones and antibodies. Alpha waves can interfere with the delta waves in nonREM sleep, PERHAPS reducing this restorative stuff to happen.
Alpha waves are usually present during relaxed wakefulness. The exact science of what is going on when alpha waves are present in nonREM sleep is still unclear. There is more alpha wave intrusion with people with any type of chronic pain and depression than there are in the general population, but the correlation is unknown. It is not considered to be causal, but may be a symptom of the other conditions.
Alpha waves indicate a level of awareness while sleeping -asleep but not asleep, aware but not awake. I wonder if they've ever done studies of mothers of young babies, who are attuned to listening for the babies while they are asleep?
It is an indicator of nonrestorative sleep, or insufficient quality of sleep.
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