So you woke up some morning and begin thinking how real your dream was, or how scary it was. Have you ever wondered what the science behind dreams is? Why do we see all those things while we are sleeping? Are those images or real? What does a dream mean? There are millions of questions; no doubt, but I have an answer for the most basic one.
What Are Dreams?
Dreams are the images, thoughts, emotions, and ideas that we experience while sleeping. Most of the times a person forgets his dream as soon as he wakes up. However, if you wake up in the middle of a dream, and think about it, you will remember it too.
But what exactly is happening inside your brain when you are dreaming? There are many explanations for this, some people find it to be a normal process of the body, others like to define it as the body’s way of psychoanalysis yet some people paint it in light of religion. There are so many theories explaining what the purpose of a dream is. Let us talk about a few of them.
A Repressed Unconscious Desire
Many times we want something to happen but we are not ready to even admit it in front of ourselves. That is what our unconscious mind wants. When we have any such desire that we do not want to admit or we do not know about, our mind is actively repressing it.
But while sleeping the mechanism of repression slowed down. In turn, many people see their deepest desires coming true in their dreams. At times people see certain things that they subconsciously want but they didn’t know.
Interpretation of Random Signals
Some times we see dreams that are very stupid and they do not make any sense. Some people use such dreams to find out answers to their everyday life decisions. But unfortunately, dreams are not a message from an unknown superpower (Even if it is, we have no proof yet).
However, we do have proof that our brain and body at times release random signals. These random signals combined together in our brain and give rise to an absurd dream. This is the most widely understood definition of a dream these days.
Our brain does not store all the information right away when we see it. Have you ever wondered how your memory works and you forget so many things that happen in your life? This is because our brain is not that good at storing information right away.
And many times our brain will replay the happenings of a day and sort them out to store them in the brain. A part of this processing may contribute to the phenomenon of dreaming.
This is why you at times see things, places and people that you randomly saw that day in your dreams.
Our brain is indeed the most fascinating organ of our body. Although we have been studying the brain for hundreds of years now, we are still unable to define how diverse and how intelligent it really is.
There are a lot of surprisingly intelligent things that a human brain is capable of doing but we still have to figure them out. One of the most striking traits of the human brain is its ability to reason. This reasoning is not conscious all the time.
At times our brain tries to interpret a few things by itself taking help from our subconscious mind. These analytical practices of the brain could be seen and felt by certain people as dreams too.
A few psychologists also believe; your physical health also impacts your dreaming. Yes! If you’re sleeping on a bed of thrones, you may have a nightmare. The same way; suffocation brings mental burden and open-air relaxes the body. Assuming it to be the reason for improvements in air-conditioner for freshness inside.
Also, where are you sleeping? Is it a sofa, a bed, a mattress on floor or spring matters. Exactly; choosing the right mattress also effects
3 Most Common Dreams Types
Dreaming is not an identical experience for everyone. Some people dream more intensely than others while some people do not even care about what their dream was.
Similarly, a person could be affected differently by a dream because of its type as well. Broadly there are following types of dreams:
- Intense Reality like dreams
These are the dreams where whatever good or bad is happening to you seems extremely real. These dreams feel so real that you do not realize that this part of your memory is actually not real.
Not everyone experiences such dreaming and most of the time a person can differentiate later on between the dream and the reality.
- Lucid Dreams
These are the dreams where a person is aware that he is dreaming. At times a person might realize in the middle of a dream that he is dreaming. Some people have claimed to control their lucid dreams as well.
However, there is no scientific evidence to suggest that dreams could be controlled by a person. According to some people, this dream controlling ability can get better with practice.
And until we find some solid evidence to support that this happens, we have to take those people for their word.
Nightmares are one of the most distressing experiences that a person can have. A nightmare could be about something that you are afraid of or something that already happened to you.
This can make your heartbeat very fast, people at times sweat while having a nightmare and the effects stay there for some time even when you wake up in the middle of a nightmare.
There are a number of reasons why a person might experience a nightmare. Some of these causes are stress, fear, trauma, emotional difficulties, illness and use of certain drugs.
Dreams are probably one of the most studied phenomenons of our conscious and unconscious brain and still, there are a lot of unanswered questions on our plate. Scientists are researching how it all works for many years. But they still haven’t figured out the exact causes and reasons that can scientifically explain dreaming in detail.
Luckily times have changed now, we have the latest technology and machines at our disposal that can help us in dissecting this whole phenomenon in detail and all the possible ways in which we can get the best out of our dreams and avoid the bad ones. Until we have this power, let us enjoy this mystery the way it is.