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Why do we dream?

Why do we dream?
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Freud thought dreams were a way for people to satisfy urges and desires that were unacceptable to society. Dreams are basically stories and images our mind creates while we sleep. Dreams can be vivid.

Dreams are basically stories and images our mind creates while we sleep. Dreams can be vivid. They can make you feel happy, sad, or scared. And they may seem confusing or perfectly rational. There are many theories about why we dream, but no one knows for sure. Some researchers say dreams have no purpose or meaning and are nonsensical activities of the sleeping brain. Others say dreams are necessary for mental, emotional, and physical health.

Studies have shown the importance of dreams to our health and well-being. In one study, researchers woke subjects just as they were drifting off into REM sleep. They found that those who were not allowed to dream experienced: increased tension, anxiety, depression, difficulty concentrating, lack of coordination, weight gain, tendency to hallucinate.


There are several hypotheses and concepts as to why we dream. Are dreams merely part of the sleep cycle or do they serve some other purpose? Possible explanations for why we dream include: to represent unconscious desires and wishes, to interpret random signals from the brain and body during sleep, to consolidate and process information gathered during the day, to work as a form of psychotherapy. Although a small percentage may not remember dreaming at all or claim that they do not, it is thought that most people dream between 3 to 6 times a night, with each dream lasting between 5 to 20 minutes.

There are factors that can potentially influence who can remember their dreams, how much of the dream remains intact and how vivid it is. Ageing is often associated with changes in sleep timing, structure and electroencephalographic (EEG) activity. Scientific literature agrees that dream recall progressively decreases from the beginning of adulthood - not in old age - and that dream reports become less intense. This evolution occurs faster in men than women, with gender differences in the content of dreams.



Common sleep positions


Common sleep positions

There are three main sleeping positions with variables of each: side, back, and stomach. Sleep specialists recommend sleeping on your side in order to rest more comfortably and decrease the likelihood of interrupted sleep.

Sleep disorder


Sleep disorder

Insomnia can be caused by psychiatric and medical conditions, unhealthy sleep habits, specific substances, and/or certain biological factors. In addition, insomnia may be a symptom of underlying sleep disorders.

Women and sleep


Women and sleep

Previous research shows that women are more sleep deprived than men, having greater difficulty falling and staying asleep and experiencing more daytime sleepiness.



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