We’ve all had them…the dreams about flying, our teeth falling out, or suddenly being naked in front of a crowd. While some of these dreams can be amusing or somewhat traumatic, there may be a deeper message.
In fact, Psychology Today notes, “Research supporting the role of somatic and sensory influences on dream content is well supported,” and it adds there’s also controversial data suggesting dreams could predict an upcoming physical ailment. If you’re lucky enough to still remember your dreams in the morning, here are seven things to consider…
1. Bizarre Dreams
If you have a dream about a clown juggling cats, or a laughing blender, then you could probably safely file those under “bizarre”. However, Psychology Today explains that bizareness in dreams could indicate fatigue associated with an illness.
“As our body fights disease, we rely on more deep sleep for immune strength, and the delay in dreaming sleep could lead to vivid and bizarre dreams,” explains the source.
2. Being Chased
If you’re having dreams that you’re being followed or trying to run away from someone (the worst is when you feel like you’re in slow motion), then it may be an indicator of tension about a goal you’re trying to achieve in your waking life, according to NetDoctor.com.
Perhaps to lessen this unpleasant sleep pattern, you should be “having a good think about what you want to achieve and what’s getting in the way of your pursuing those ambitions,” notes the source.
3. Scary Nightmares (Night Terrors)
If you’re seeing spiders crawling on the wall, skeletons talking to you from dark corners, or shadows that are turning into monsters (we got chills just writing that), then your body may be telling you that your medication is a problem, according to Daily Mail UK.
The source notes that nightmares can be the result of taking beta-blockers, a medication used for high blood pressure and other conditions. It explains that the medication widens blood vessels, which may alter brain chemistry and pollute your dreams. An irregular heartbeat may also be a culprit of the dreams, so it may be time to see your doc (which should be less scary).
4. Excessive Dreaming
Daily Mail UK also notes if you seem to be dreaming a lot more than usual, there could be health factors attached to that as well. While it could be a simple case of being too hot or too cold in your room (the source recommends around 64-Fahrenheit as an optimal sleeping temperature), it could mean more.
It could also mean increased hormonal action (like when a woman’s period is approaching), or it could be from chronic pain or weaning yourself off antidepressant medications. “This is because many of the commonly used antidepressants can drastically reduce the amount of REM or dreaming sleep,” according to the article.
5. Being Assaulted
If someone is being aggressive towards you or is physically trying to harm you in a dream, it could mean there are big health problems on the horizon, according to News.com (based out of Australia).
The perception of violence is caused by flailing around in your sleep from a condition called REM sleep behavior disorder, according to the source. This can be related to damage of a particular area of the brain and can be an early indicator of Alzheimer’s (sometimes appearing up to 10 years before other symptoms), according to the site. Parkinson’s Disease could also be a possibility, it adds. This could be key in getting treated early.
6. Intimate Dreams
If you have a lover visiting you in your dreams, then lucky you. However, it may not be anything about intimacy at all, according to sources. News.com explains that these types of fantasies actually increase with age, “and are particularly frequent among the over-60s”.
What the dreams may actually be about is a boost in creativity, according to the source. This could be from being passionate about a new hobby following retirement that gets your creative juices flowing, leading to some juicy dreams. But hey, no one really complains about this side effect.
7. Dreams That Startle you Awake
If you are about to fall off a building and suddenly awaken (thank God), or are leaning in for a kiss with a beautiful person and end up kissing your pillow instead while wide awake, or you just wake up prematurely for seemingly no good reason, then you may need to consider your diet, says UniversityHealthNews.com.
The source explains that low blood sugar could be to blame. While a mid-sleep snack can help you settle back into a slumber, but there are some eating tips to regulate blood sugar throughout your waking hours: make sure you have some protein and fats every few hours to stabilize blood sugars, and adopt a lower-carbohydrate menu. “Fats are like the big log that can sustain a fire for hours, whereas carbohydrates are like kindling, which burn quickly,” it explains.