A nightmare tends to be extremely vivid dream that evokes feelings of helplessness, terror, anxiety and sorrow. Nightmares are common in children, but can happen during any age, between 2% and 8% of the adult population is plagued by nightmares. Nightmares are known to be vividly realistic, unsettling dreams that rattle you awake during the middle of the night.
Find out what your nightmares are trying to tell you. Interpret The Meaning Of Your Nightmare By A Dream Analyst.
Common Nightmares & Meanings
- Bitten by a snake
- Being chased
- Teeth dreams
- Death dreams
- Stuck in sleep
- Being Cheated On
- Test or exams
- Death dreams
- Natural disasters
What Might Be Causing Nightmares
Adult nightmares are often involuntary however they can be caused by a multiple of factors or underlying disorders. Studies have shown that half of the population experiences nightmares on a regular basis, though children tend to experience night terrors (ages of 3 to 12 years) reporting symptoms of anxiety, fear and intense crying while sleeping.
Nightmares can be very complex dreams that have many underlying causes and doesn’t necessary predict something bad to happen. In recent study from the University Of Switzerland they concluded nightmares improved the effectiveness of the brain reacting to an alarming or scary situations faced in our lives. Find Out Why Nightmares Are Good For You.
Prescriptions medications have been also known to increase dream vividness and nightmares or taking illegal drugs or alcoholic substances. This can also occur if the individual is coming off medication, or if an addiction wears off. If you are suffering from lack of sleep we recommend you to consult your doctor.
- Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
- Unconscious fears
- Unresolved past experiences
- Medication or withdrawal
- Anxiety and depression
- Late night snack or poor diet
- Sleep Apnea
Suffering From Any Sleep Disorder?
Constant disruptions in your sleep may also be attributed by sleep disorders such as insomnia, sleep apnea, narcolepsy, restless leg syndrome and REM sleep disorder. Furthermore, a Parasomnias is a disruptive sleep disorders that happens during (REM) that results in undesirable physical or verbal behaviors, such as walking or talking during sleep.
These disorders cause after effects as the individual will fear going back to bed to experience that same scenario. As a result one will be more likely to encounter a mild sleep deprivation, decreased mental clarity and depression.
This can also lead to insomnia. There hasn’t been a cure for nightmare disorders but there are many techniques to minimize them from occurring. Frequent yoga and mediation have been known to help reduce the cause as your body and mind to be in a more relaxed state.
Nightmare disorder or commonly referred to as a “dream anxiety disorder” considered a series of nightmares classified under the DSM -IV. These repeated awakenings during nightmares occur during the stages of REM sleep.
During the dream the individual will experience intense fear as if they are fighting for their life. Most of the time they will wake up instantly due to the terror they are experiencing thus having trouble going back to sleep.
The dreamer might experience speaking, moaning, screaming at random of the night. Though these symptoms may not always be present. When woken from the sleep state, the dreamer will often experience a feeling of anxiety as adrenaline is still pumping thought out their body.
Night Terror Vs Nightmare
There is a misconception that night terrors and nightmares are the same thing. They might mimic nightmares but though they are completely different in nature. Sleep terrors can be classified under a parasomnia disorder where the individual can physically act out in their sleep by screaming, thrashing, or even crying.
Occurrences of aggressive sleep walking have happened as the dreamer may even attack a family member. The dreamer may experience difficulty trying to snap out of the dream state. Sleep terrors usually occur with children under the age of nine, though, it can frequent adults who are under extreme stress, depression, or even bi polar disorder.
Generally the movement can last anywhere between 10 – 20 minutes, either the individual will go right back to REM without ever disrupting their sleep state. If they do wake up from this state they will often encounter confusion or anxiety. The majority of sleep disturbances, occur in the stage before deep sleep that decrease.
Spiritual Meaning Of Nightmares
In fact decoding your nightmares might be beneficial to you spiritually and mentally. Dreams contain metaphoric messages to warn the dreamer of ignored internal ideosyncracies. Understanding the dream symbols might give the dreamer insight to what might be overlooked that could be causing distress. Nightmare occur as a warning to help you follow the right direction and path in life.
Other Possible Causes of Nightmares
- Experienced a death of a loved on or somebody close to you
- Quitting smoking, alcohol or going on the patch
- Consuming large amount of alcohol in blood stream
- Battling a illness or flu
- Having a Bad reaction to drugs or withdrawal
- Not dealing with an on going problems in your life
- High volumes of stress and anxiety
- Trauma from witnessing violence
Nightmares are fairly common in both men and women that can frequent as much as 2 times a month. Experiencing recurring nightmares on a regular basis might suggest their is an underlying issue.
Recurring nightmares are not your enemy but your friend trying to get your attention. They appear one way but mean another, painful experiences and emotions are stored away hidden in the dark part of the unconscious. As disturbing as the dream my present itself to be, the message is clear for you to shed light on what’s ignored.
Nightmares & Children
Believe it or not nightmares are more common with children than adults. Roughly around one quarter of children have at least one scary dream or nightmare a week. Scary dreams can start as early as 2 to 3 years of age for a children. At the age of 6 they may start to experience full on nightmares. Around the ages 10 and up, nightmares tend to subside and become less vivid.
Children’s nightmares typically involve frightening situations or events that revolve the people close to them. The types of nightmares contain images or bizarre events, the typical “monster or ghosts“ theme. Children are generally quite during their nightmare and hardly move around like most adults.
Child Nightmares Prevention
Unfortunately there is no cure to stop your child nightmares, though they can be prevented by using techniques that we provided below. Studies have shown that nightmares could be genetic as its passed down from either member of the family. Though there are ways you can help take control to comfort your child from nightmares.
- Play relaxing music for your child throughout the night
- Have them stay away from junk food and high sugar drinks
- Train them to control their dreams. Tell your child what to day to monsters in the nightmare.
- Read them a nice book and keep positive thoughts in their head before bed.
- Talk to your kids and ask them what are their greatest fears and tackle them.
Tips On How To Stop Nightmares
Understanding what underlining factors that might be causing your nightmares by examining your lifestyle. Has there been a build up of stress lately? Have you been taking any drugs that might be affecting your sleep? Analyzing what you nightmare means helps figure out what problems in your life you need to tackle.
Taking the time to relax before you go to bed is a start. You can practice each night 10 minutes of Yoga and breathing exercises right before bed. Listening to relaxing soothing music during sleep calms your whole mental being.
Reports state that playing video games and watching negative images before bed will cause an increase of nightmares. Practicing lucid dreaming has been quite beneficial when it comes to manipulating your dream settings. You can make the bad guy go away in a blink of an eye.
There is not much you can do when you just had a nightmare, though paying attention to the symbols in them will give you a better understanding on what your unconscious is hinting at. Keeping a dream journal helps you remember the dream in more detail.
Taking good care of your body goes a long way. Eating healthy has more benefits then just feeling well. You will experience peaceful sleeps and less snoring. See benefits of nightmares.