15 Facts about dreams

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A dream is successions of images, ideas and emotions, that usually occurs involuntarily in the mind during certain stages of sleep. The content and purpose of dreams are not definitively understood, though they have been a topic of scientific speculation, as well as a subject of philosophical and religious interest, throughout recorded history.

1. Lucid dreaming

There is a whole subculture of people practicing what is called lucid or conscious dreaming. Using various techniques, these people have supposedly learned to assume control of their dreams and do amazing things like flying, passing through walls, and traveling to different dimensions or even back in time.

2. Inventions inspired by dreams

Dreams are responsible for many of the greatest inventions of mankind. A few examples include:

  • The idea for Google -Larry Page
  • Alternating current generator -Tesla
  • DNA’s double helix spiral form -James Watson
  • The sewing machine -Elias Howe
  • Periodic table -Dimitri Mendeleyev

…and many more.

3. Premonitions

There are some astounding cases where people actually dreamt about things which happened to them later, in the exact same ways they dreamed about. You could say they got a glimpse of the future, or it might have just been coincidence. The fact remains that this is some seriously interesting and bizarre phenomena. Some of the most famous premonition dreams include:

  • Abraham Lincoln dreamt of His Assassination
  • Many of the victims of 9/11 had dreams warning them about the catastrophe
  • Mark Twain’s dream of his brother’s demise
  • 19 verified precognitive dreams about the Titanic catastrophe

4. Sleep paralysis

Two characteristics of sleep paralysis are the inability to move (hence paralysis) and a sense of an extremely evil presence in the room with you. It doesn’t feel like a dream, but 100% real. Studies show that during an attack, sleep paralysis sufferers show an overwhelming amygdala activity.

5. Unbelievable sleep walkers

Sleepwalking is a very rare and potentially dangerous sleep disorder. It is an extreme form of REM sleep disorder, and these people don’t just act out their dreams, but go on real adventures at night.

  • Lee Hadwin is a nurse by profession, but in his dreams he is an artist. Literally. He “sleepdraws” gorgeous portraits, of which he has no recollection afterwards
  • A woman having sex with strangers while sleepwalking
  • A man who drove 22 miles and killed his cousin while sleepwalking
  • A sleepwalker who walked out of the window from the third floor, and barely survived

6. Dream drug

There are actually people who like dreaming and dreams so much that they never want to wake up. They want to continue on dreaming even during the day, so they take an illegal and extremely potent hallucinogenic drug called Dimethyltryptamine. It is actually only an isolated and synthetic form of the chemical our brains produce naturally during dreaming.

7. Increased brain activity

You would associate sleeping with peace and quiet, but actually our brains are more active during sleep than during the day.

8. You always dream – you just don’t remember it

Many people claim that they don’t dream at all, but that’s not true: we all dream, but up to 60% of people don’t remember their dreams at all.

9. Blind people dream too

Blind people who were not born blind see images in their dreams but people who were born blind don’t see anything at all. They still dream, and their dreams are just as intense and interesting, but they involve the other senses beside sight.

10. In our dream we only see faces that we know

It is proven that in dreams we can only see faces that we have seen in real life before. So beware, that scary old lady next to you on the bus might as well be in your next nightmare.

11. Multiple dreams per night

You can have up to seven different dreams per night depending on how many REM cycles you have. We only dream during the REM period of sleep, and the average person dreams one to two hours every night.

12. Not everyone dreams in color

As much as 12% of people only dream in black and white.

13. Nightmares

Anxiety is the most common emotion that is experienced in dreams. Not only that, negative emotions are much more likely to occur than positive emotions in your dreams. So don’t worry, you are not the only one getting nightmares frequently.

14. Remembering

Only within five minutes since you are up from your sleep, an average person’s dream is forgotten and in just 10 minutes, 90 percent of the dream is gone with the wind. However, if awakened at the REM (rapid eye movement sleep) stage, that person is more likely to remember the dream.

15. Day dreaming

Psychologists say that daydreaming is actually what occurs if your dream has been carried forward, it is basically related to what you dreamt about when you were fast asleep. They also involve different mental processes.

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