28.04.2014
The question of whether dreams actually have a physiological, biological or psychological function has yet to be answered. Michael from Vsauce sums up what scientists know about dreams and the neurological effect of sleep disorders, along with a couple of theories about the evolutionary relevance of this phenomenon.
After all these years, researchers are still puzzled by many aspects of how and why it operates like it does. Studies specify that as we are learning new things in our waking hours, dreams increase while we sleep. We know that the rear portion of our brain gets pretty active during REM sleep, when most dreaming occurs.
There are a significant number of people who remember theirdreams but a very small percentage who are aware of what their dreams mean. Scientists have been performing sleep and dream studies for decades now, and we still aren’t 100 percent sure about the function of sleep, or exactly how and why we dream. Participants in a dream study who were taking a language course showed more dream activity than those who were not. While the body might be taken out of the equation, other parts of the brain responsible for memory and conscious thought try to interpret the signals in a way that makes sense, resulting in a dream. We do know that our dream cycle is characteristically most abundant and best remembered during the REM (Rapid Eye Movement) stage of sleep.
One is that dreams work hand in hand with sleep to help the brain sort through everything it collects during the waking hours.


In light of such studies, the idea that we use our dreams to sort through and convert short-term memories into long-term memories has gained some momentum in recent years.
If something is weighing heavily on your mind during the day, chances are you might dream about it either specifically, or through obvious imagery. The truth is, as long as the brain remains such a mystery, we probably won’t be able to pinpoint with absolute certainty exactly why we dream. It’s also pretty commonly accepted among the scientific community that we all dream, though the frequency in which dreams are remembered varies from person to person. Actually we dream several times in onenight, as you might have figured out from the statistics given at the beginning of thiscolumn. You can learn to expand your awareness of yourself by learning to interpret yourdreams.People in your dreams represent aspects of yourself. Dreams occur in the deeper stages ofsleep which means that one needs to learn how to relax and remove attention from theworries and concerns of the day in order to receive from the subconscious mind.If you are one of those individuals who suffers from insomnia, or if you wake upfeeling more tired than you did before you went to bed, there is a solution.
When you are dreaming of someone ofthe same sex [for example a woman is dreaming of another woman] this personsymbolizes an aspect of your conscious mind. Lucid dreams are dreams where you are conscious that you’re dreaming, but your brain is still in a state of sleep.
Approximately 50% of people have experienced a lucid dream in their life, though the amount of people who experience lucid dreams on a regular basis is significantly lower.For a long time, psychologists and researchers denied that true lucid dreams were possible. Repeat thesesteps for ten minutes each night before going to bed.When you wake up in the morning record your dreams.


They argued that if accounts of lucid dreaming were valid, they likely occurred during moments of transition between sleeping and waking, and certainly not during the deep REM sleep where dreams are normally found. You might not use these qualities to describe yourself, yetthey are being brought out in your dream because your subconscious mind wants youto see that they are a part of your character. If this were true, then more people (especially thosewho are stressed-out) would remember their dreams.
Further research also found that lucid dreams tended to occur most frequently at times of high arousal during REM sleep.3. In a study at the University of Montreal that looked at over 3,500 dream reports, around 8% of the dream reports from both men and women contained sexual activity. 4% of women in the study reported experiencing dreams where their partners would orgasm, but none of the men in the study reported orgasms other than their own. Who knows, maybe dreams really are a veiled window into our baser urges and impulses, like Freud suggested.



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