Dreaming is one of the most mysterious and interesting experiences in our lives. During the Roman Era some dreams were even submitted to the Roman Senate for analysis and dream interpretation. They were thought to be messages from the gods. Dream interpreters even accompanied military leaders into battles and campaigns!
In addition to this, it is also known that many artists have received their creative ideas from their dreams.
But what do we actually know about dreams? Here are 20 interesting facts about dreams:
1. You Forget 90% of Your Dreams: Within 5 minutes of waking half of your dream is forgotten. Within 10, 90% is gone.
2. Blind People also Dream: People who became blind after birth can see images in their dreams. People who are born blind do not see any images, but have dreams equally vivid involving their other senses of sound, smell, touch and emotion.
3. Every human being dreams (except in cases of extreme psychological disorder). If you think you are not dreaming – you just forget your dreams.
4. In Our Dreams, We Only See Faces That We already Know: Our mind is not inventing faces – in our dreams we see real faces of real people that we have seen during our life but may not know or remember. We have all seen hundreds of thousands of faces throughout our lives, so we have an endless supply of characters for our brain to utilize during our dreams
5. Not Everybody Dreams in Color: A full 12% of sighted people dream exclusively in black and white. Studies from 1915 through to the 1950s maintained that the majority of dreams were in black and white, but these results began to change in the 1960s. Recent research has suggested that those changing results may be linked to the switch from black-and-white film and TV to color media.
6. Dreams are Symbolic: If you dream about some particular subject it is not often that the dream is about that. Dreams speak in a deeply symbolic language. Whatever symbol your dream picks on it is most unlikely to be a symbol for itself.
7. The most common emotion experienced in dreams is anxiety. Negative emotions are more common than positive ones.
8. You can have four to seven dreams in one night. On average you can dream anywhere from one or two hours every night.
9. Animals Dream Too: Studies have been done on many different animals, and they all show the same brain waves during dreaming sleep as humans. Watch a dog sleeping sometime. The paws move like they are running and they make yipping sounds as if they are chasing something in a dream.
10. Body Paralysis: Rapid eye movement (REM) sleep is a normal stage of sleep characterized by rapid movements of the eyes. REM sleep in adult humans typically occupies 20-25% of total sleep, about 90-120 minutes of a night’s sleep. During REM sleep the body is paralyzed by a mechanism in the brain in order to prevent the movements which occur in the dream from causing the physical body to move. However, it is possible for this mechanism to be triggered before, during, or after normal sleep while the brain awakens.
11. Dream Incorporation: Our mind interprets the external stimuli that our senses are bombarded with when we are asleep and make them a part of our dreams. This means that sometimes in our dreams we hear a sound from reality and incorporate it in a way.
12. Men and Women Dream Differently: Men tend to dream more about other men. Around 70% of the characters in a man’s dream are other men. On the other hand, a woman’s dream contains almost an equal number of men and women. Aside from that, men generally have more aggressive emotions in their dreams than the female lot.
13. Thousands of years ago, the Egyptians were the first to create a dream dictionary in 4000 B.C.E
14. If you are snoring, then you cannot be dreaming. This fact is repeated all over the Internet, but I’m a bit suspicious whether it’s really true as I haven’t found any scientific evidence to support it.
15. Drug withdrawal can cause more intense dreams. People who also quit alcohol and smoking experience heavier dreams and nightmares.
16. Babies don’t dream of themselves until they reach the age of 3
17. People who suffer from a personality disorder lack dream activity
18. Human beings spend roughly around 6 years of their lifetime dreaming
19. The colder your house is, the worse your dreams are. They say that if your room is at an average temperature, you have better sleeps
20. Dreams tend not to be happy events, and the three most common reported emotions are anger, sadness and fear.
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