Why do lucid dreams feel so frightening

Dreams - What They Mean and Why They Are So Important

Dreams are necessary for our emotional balance. The brain needs them for its clean-up work: The important experiences are stored in long-term memory, our hard drive in the brain. The rest will be deleted. We only dream what moves us. Dreams show how we are, what burdens us, how we deal with something we want - a mental cinema with a high information value. Lucid or lucid dreamers are dream specialists. You can feel when you are dreaming. You can interfere in the dream, practice difficult movements, e.g. in sports, or deal with a problem in a new way. Lucid dreams can be learned! What happens when you dream? What does a dream tell us? How can we better remember dreams? How can we use lucid dreams?


When do you dream?


Each night! Even if you don't remember. During the night, deep sleep and dream phases alternate 4-6 times. The dream or REM phases increase in the morning. That is why we dream most in the early hours of the morning.


What does the body do while we are dreaming?


The musculoskeletal system is put into sleep mode so as not to thrash about wildly when watching the cinema. The only thing that moves while dreaming are the twitching eyes. The SEM is derived from this: Rapid Eye Movement. During intense dreams, the pulse and blood pressure can rise, breathing can become stronger or irregular, and energy consumption can rise.


Where does dreaming take place in the brain?


To find out, test subjects in sleep laboratories were wired or asked to sleep in an MRI scanner. Some actually fell asleep and their brains could be scanned. The result was that when dreaming, the areas of the brain that are responsible for feelings, vision and movement are particularly active. This proves what everyone has known for a long time: our dreams are fed by the world of emotions. The areas of the brain for intellectual performance remain largely uninvolved.


What are we dreaming 


For Sigmund Freund, the forefather of psychoanalysis, dreams were messages from the unconscious. Today's sleep medicine, on the other hand, does not attach any importance to dreams as information from the unknown depths of the soul. For the dream researcher Dr. Michael Schredl dreams are a continuation of everyday life. We feel, think and continue to experience in dreams what we experience during the day. Sleep researcher Dr. Björn Walther confirms the thesis. According to his studies, dream contents can be evoked by external influences. Badaging the arm, for example, increases the likelihood of dreaming of a broken or heavy arm.
That means that you can also create pleasant dreams. Good sleep hygiene is advantageous for this, for example by processing negative experiences of the day before going to bed: be it through a conversation, the abreaction during sport or a relaxation exercise. What makes a deep impression, negative or positive, is dreamed.


What are the functions of dreams?


Dreams have a cleansing effect. The brain can sort the events of the day into important and unimportant. Essentials are saved, unnecessary things are deleted. There is space for new experiences. From a psychoanalytic point of view, repressed soul contents come to light through the images in the dream and can be processed. Without dreams, our mental health suffers. Studies show that disorders in the dream phase lead to nervousness, depression and aggression, even after 2 nights if you are woken up every time at the beginning of the dream phase. If the test persons were prevented from dreaming for 2 weeks, they showed pronounced irritability and fears.


What does a dream tell us?


Even if it seems very exciting what the countless dream interpretation books explain, ultimately each dream must be viewed and evaluated individually by the dreamer based on his personality and current life situation. Nevertheless, the dream researcher Dr. Michael Schredl worked out 7 basic patterns and their meanings:
An exam in a dream is supposed to show that one does not feel sufficiently prepared for a situation. If you fall in a dream, it can be a sign of the fear of losing everything. A chase can indicate a fear of something that one does not want to deal with. If one is naked in the dream, one does not feel appropriate and unprotected in the situation. Being late can mean the fear of not being able to complete the current tasks. Looking for a toilet can mean wanting something urgently, but the environment and circumstances make it difficult to satisfy. If a loved one dies in a dream, it should mean the fear of not getting along without these people.


How should we go about interpreting our dreams?


Intuitive and spontaneous! No logical links or analyzes! It is important how one feels in the dream, e.g. fearful, strong, powerless, aggressive etc. Where does this feeling occur in real life? What are the associations between dream and reality? What new information or clues does the dream give? Can you discover solutions or other strategies to deal with a situation? Or something does not work in the dream at all, so that alternatives should also be looked for in reality?


What helps to better remember your dreams?


A dream diary! It should be ready next to the bed with a pen. In this way, what is still in memory of the dream can be recorded immediately after waking up.


What are lucid or lucid dreams and how can they be used?


In lucid dreams, the dreamer knows that he is dreaming. He can join in the action. People with nightmares can develop helpful strategies and behaviors in their dream and give the frightening event a positive turn through lucid dreaming. Athletes can practice complex movement sequences in lucid dreams and apply them in reality. Endurance and coordination can also be improved through nightly "training".


How do you learn lucid dreams?


Neuroscientist Martin Dresler advises keeping a dream diary and finding out basic motives. During the day you imagine the motif and say: “I'm dreaming now.” So the sleeper should recognize the motif as a dream the next time. In reality checks, one asks oneself the question again and again during the day: "Am I dreaming or am I awake." After sufficient practice, one will also ask the question in dreams. Covering your nose is also a suitable reality check: when you are awake you are out of breath, in dreams you continue to breathe. Or jump up: if you are dreaming, you will not fall down. To get directly into a REM phase, you set the alarm clock at a late hour after about 5 hours of sleep, stay awake for half an hour and then go straight to the REM dream phase.