Dreams are often complex and wonderful experiences that happen while we sleep. Sometimes these dreams stick with us for a while, and sometimes we forget all about them as soon as we wake up!
Dreams are a succession of images, ideas, emotions, and sensations that usually occur involuntarily in the mind during certain stages of sleep. You are most likely to experience dreams in the REM stage of sleep. The REM stage, or rapid eye movement, is a stage of the sleep cycle that is pretty similar to being awake. Our dreams are often the most vivid during REM sleep. REM sleep is known to be critical for cognitive development like learning, memory, and even creativity.
Background on dreams
People experiencing dreams date back to the beginning of time. The ancient Egyptians believed that dreams were simply a different form of seeing. The ancient Greeks and Romans believed that dreams were equal parts predictions of the future, and also visitations from the dead. According to Psychology Today, the study of dreams in scientific research laboratories began with the discovery of REM sleep in the 1950’s. There have been numerous studies done over the years, but still we are pretty unclear about why dreams occur, and what they might mean (if anything).
Common types of dreams
There are many different types of dreams, and the most common are nightmares, lucid dreams, recurring dreams, vivid dreams, and fever dreams. Nightmares were first defined in 1300, and were referred to as a female spirit or monster supposed to settle on and produce a feeling of suffocation in a sleeping person or animal. Nowadays, they are most commonly defined as a frightening or unpleasant dream. Lucid dreams are a type of dream in which the dreamer becomes aware that they are dreaming while dreaming. During a lucid dream, the dreamer may gain some amount of control over the dream characters, narrative, or environment. Recurring dreams are dreams which are experienced repeatedly over a long period of time. They can be pleasant, or nightmarish and are unique to the dreamer and their experiences. Vivid dreams are exactly what they sound like! Dreams that are intense, linger in your mind, and often feel similar to real life memories. Lastly, fever dreams are vivid, bizarre, or unpleasant dreams people may experience when they have a fever.
What your dreams could be telling you
Oddly enough, many people find themselves having similar dreams to those around them. There are a certain number of dreams (or nightmares) that many people experience, and there is actually a reason for having those dreams. Some common dreams people have are their teeth falling out, being late to a college class, falling, or being chased by someone or something. It’s important to note that dreams don’t always necessarily have one meaning, and they are different depending on the person.
Dreams about your teeth falling out: This could stem from feelings of insecurity and shame. It’s also been said that repeatedly dreaming about your teeth falling out can be due to control, or lack thereof. If you are feeling insecurities in life, or feeling like you have no control over things that are happening, this could be causing those dreams about losing your teeth!
Dreams about being late: Dreams about being late to class, work, or anything often stem from pent up anxiety. However, psychotherapist Carolyn Cole tells Bustle that she feels these dreams mean something different. According to Cole, “my interpretation about a dream about running late means you feel you are always one step behind, just missing that opportunity which you are desiring.”
Dreams about being chased: These dreams can often be frightening. If you’re being chased by something or someone in your dreams, it often can mean that you’re worried about an upcoming event, or you’re wishing to avoid something that you would rather not face.
Dreams about falling: You may have had a dream about falling before, often waking up just before you hit the ground. According to Healthline, these dreams can occur due to multiple reasons. Some of these include feeling of insecurity or instability, feeling anxious, overwhelmed, or out of control, and feeling inadequate or inferior in life.
Fun facts about dreams
Dreams are an interesting thing that happens to the mind as we sleep. There are several fun facts about dreams, and according to Medical News Today, here are some of the best!
- We may not remember dreaming, but everyone is thought to dream between three and six times per night
- It is thought that each dream lasts between five to twenty minutes
- Around 95% of dreams are forgotten by the time a person gets out of bed
- Dreaming can help you learn and develop long-term memories
- Blind people dream more with other sensory components compared to sighted people
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To restful and healthy days ahead.
The Relaxium Team
*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food & Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.