Tonight you will dream, just like you do every single night. First you will go through the different stages of sleep and then you’ll reach REM or rapid eye movement stage. During REM is when you have the most vivid, memorable dreams. It’s when your brain is the most active while you are sleeping.
Psychologists and philosophers have given various explanations for the reasons we dream, and even with scientific studies no one really knows for sure why we do it.
Here are 25 Psychological Facts About Dreams and 10 Bonus Facts
1. You Almost Forget 90% of Your Dreams
There’s a time limit to how much you can remember about your dream. Only within 5 minutes since you are up from your sleep, an average person’s dream is forgotten and in just 10 minutes, 90% 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.
2. 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.
3. Blind People Dreams too?
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.
4. In Our Dreams We Only See Faces That We Have Seen Once
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. Dreams Tend to be More Negative then Positive
Surprisingly, dreams are more often negative than positive. The three most widely reported emotions felt during dreaming are anger, sadness and fear.
6. You Can Have Four to Seven Dreams in One Night
On average you can dream anywhere from one or two hours every night.
7. Everybody Dreams
Every human being dreams (except in cases of extreme psychological disorder). If you think you are not dreaming – you just forget your dreams.
8. Some Dreams Seen Are Even Black and White
A full 12% of sighted people dream exclusively in black and white. The remaining number dream in full color. 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.
Today only 4.4% of the dreams of under-25 year-olds are in black and white. Recent research has suggested that those changing results may be linked to the switch from black-and-white film and TV to color media.
9. 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.
10. Precognitive Dreams (Sense of Déjà Vu)
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.
• Verified precognitive dreams about the Titanic catastrophe
11. Dreaming Of Teeth Falling Out
Dreaming that your teeth are falling out or rotting may refer to your fears of being embarrassed or making a fool of yourself in some situation. Perhaps you feel unprepared for the task at hand and are afraid of getting ridiculed. These dreams are often an over-exaggeration of your worries and anxieties.
This dream is supposedly a sign that something happened in the dreamer’s life that has caused him or her to lose confidence.
12. You Don’t Need to be Asleep to Dream
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.
13. Snoring While Dreaming
According to recent studies, it has been revealed that people who snore, are not necessarily dreaming at that particular period of time. Though this is not scientifically proven.
14. Six Years of Dreaming
Six years is the period of an average human beings life spent dreaming.
15. 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.
For example you may be dreaming that you are in a concert while your brother is playing a guitar during your sleep.
16. Lucid dreaming / Controlling Your Dreams
Lucid dreaming is the ability to realize in your dream that you are in a dream. Thereafter, you take control of that dream and do whatever you want.
17. Unborn Dreamer
Unborn babies dream, too! In fact, a fetus in his mother’s womb has dreams that focus on sound and touch. Toddlers, on the other hand, do not have dreams of themselves until age 3.
18. Dream Paralysis
You are paralyzed whenever you are in dreamland. Dreams often occur during the REM stage of sleep, and while the brain is very active during this phase, the body is temporarily paralyzed in order to stop the person from acting out his sleep. This event – called sleep paralysis – happens in 40% of people.
During sleep paralysis, you will not be able to speak or move for a few minutes. Some feel choked, while some feel undue pressure for few minutes even after they are awake.
19. Dreams Can Spark Inventions
Dreams can bring out your inventive side. In fact, many inventors have created breakthrough inventions and ideas as results of their dreams.
Excellent examples include Dimitri Mendeleyev’s Periodic Table and Nikola Tesla’s Alternating Current Generator. Elias Howe, after a dream of something running after him came up with the brilliant invention that most of us know as the sewing machine. James Watson conjured up the double helix spiral form of the DNA, while Larry Page came up with the idea of Google during his sleep.
20. Animal’s Dreams too
Most land mammals and birds have dreams. Your Pets have dreams as well!
Your pooch or cat has nightly visions as well, and they even have more complex dreams than yours. Whenever you see them making noises or moving their paws, it means that they are having dreams – or maybe even nightmares.
21. Men Having Erections While Dreaming
It’s common for men to experience erections in the final REM stage of sleep. However, researchers recently discovered that these erections are not necessarily related to erotic dreams as previously thought. Nevertheless, the origin and purpose of these night erections remains unknown.
22. You Can’t Read While Dreaming
We cannot read in dream because dreaming and reading are function of different side of the brain.
23. Anxiety Dreams
Anxiety dreams occur during REM Sleep, as most others do, but they have specific characteristics.
People reported feeling stressed, uneasy and fearful while they woke up.
Having a dream of a test at your school for which you didn’t study, Being chased, embarrassed, humiliation or falling from a height are some types of Anxiety Dreams
24. Increase in Brain Activity While Dreaming
You would associate sleeping with peace and quiet, but actually our brains are more active during sleep than during the day.
Dreams occur in all five stages of sleep but nightmares tend to occur in the final stage (REM) which is associated with high brain activity, rapid eye movements and inhibited voluntary motor activity.
Women have more frequent nightmares then men.
Here are more 10 bonus Psychological facts about dreams :
1. There is still no scientific explanation for “why do we dream”.
2. 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.
3. In general, pregnant women remember dreams more than other populations. This is largely due to the extreme hormonal changes during pregnancy.
4. In ancient Greece, dreams were regarded as messages from the gods.
5. Babies don’t dream themselves until they reach the age of 3.
6. Dreaming of falling of from a height is called hypnic jerk.Some of the causes of hypnic jerk are irregular sleep cycles, less oxygen
in blood, tiredness, indigestion or reflex, anxiety.
7. Kenneth Parks who drove 10 miles and killed his in-law while sleepwalking.
8. Women too actually experience orgasms while dreaming.
9. The most common dream? Your spouse is cheating.According to a study conducted by around 5000 men and women the most common dreams were that your spouse is cheating on you / having an affair.
10. Weird things done by sleep walkers include jumping from a building to their death , having sex with strangers, creating oil painting etc.