Dreams, since times immemorial, have fascinated humans. We have always tried to find out the meanings of the dreams that we see. What are they? Why do we see them? Ancient cultures thought of dreams as divine messages or representations of their reality or even omens of near future. Science has today managed to give us many explanations but still, we are not satisfied. The enigmatic scenes that appear in our mind when we sleep still continue to intrigue us. So, if you are one such person who is curious about dreams, here are 35 interesting facts about dreams that you may like:
Interesting Facts About Dreams: 1-10
1. Toddlers don’t see themselves in their dreams until they reach the age of 3 and for some it is 4.
2. When a person sleeps, the surrounding stimuli and sounds are incorporated in his or her dream. This is known as Dream Incorporation.
3. Dreams of children are way shorter than those of adults. For children, many of their dreams (nearly 40%) are nightmares. Why? Scientists believe that for children, their dreams work as coping mechanism.
4. Among ancient Greeks, dreams were considered to be divine messages and they would often choose sacred places for sleeping so that they could make important dreams appear.
5. For some people, dreams work as a device. William Shakespeare for instance used his dreams to create new characters as well as advance the plots of his stories.
6. Research studies have shown that once a person is awakened from his or her dream in the REM or Rapid Eye Movement phase of sleep, it can lead to hallucinations, irritability and finally psychosis.
7. According to Plato, liver was the organ where dreams originated from.
8. A man dreams more about men while for a woman, the percentage of men and women occurring in her dreams are fairly equal.
9. According to scientists, fetuses dream as well. Since they don’t have visual stimuli, their dreams mostly consist of touch sensations and sound.
10. Nearly 40% of world population suffer from what is known as Sleep Paralysis. This is actually a phenomenon where a person fails to move for about a minute when he or she wakes up from a dream and recognizes the surroundings.
Interesting Facts About Dreams: 11-20
11. Public humiliation, falling, flying and unpreparedness are some common dreams found in socio-economic classes and cultures of the world and these dreams are a direct result of human anxieties.
12. When an average person wakes up from a dream, he or she forgets around 50% of the dream within 5 minutes of waking up. Almost 90% of the dreams is lost within 10 minutes.
13. If a person wakes up in the REM stage of the dream, it is more likely that he or she will remember the dream.
14. Elias Howe who invented the sewing machine said that the needles he invented were an outcome of his nightmares. He used to dream of being chased by spear-holding cannibals. Those spears actually looked like needles to him that he invented.
15. Many people are plagued by the dream of ‘falling’. This dream usually comes during the early stages of sleep. It is during this dream that people experience muscle spasms known as myoclonic jerks.
16. Around 18 to 38 percent people report of experiencing precognitive dreams. Around 70 percent people report of experiencing déjà vu dreams.
17. Any human face we see in our dreams is or was a real person we saw at least once in our lifetime. Brain keeps a visual image of the person even if we may not remember the person. No person ever sees the face of a person he or she never saw in life.
18. People who cannot see also dream. Those who are blind by birth experience dreams in form of touch, smell or sound. People who become blind at the later stages of life actually see visual images in their dreams and if they see human faces, those faces belong to people they saw when they did not lose their vision.
19. Children who grow up watching color TV see colorful dreams while children who grew up watching black and white TV mostly encounter monochrome dreams. Nearly 12% people experience exclusive monochrome dreams but the numbers are falling rapid because these people are mostly very old and dying out rapidly.
20. Aggression in dreams is defined by birth order of siblings. Despite the fact that dreams of men are more aggressive than those of women, if female babies are born first, they will have more aggressive characters in their dreams. Male babies born first look at themselves in more positive light compared to their younger brothers.
Interesting Facts About Dreams: 21-30
21. In ancient Rome, people who encountered unusual dreams reported the same to the Senate for interpretation or for finding the meanings of their dreams.
22. Beatty Papyrus written in 1350 B.C. is the world’s oldest dream dictionary to ever exist. Beatty Papyrus was discovered/found near Thebes.
23. An average human – male or female – spends nearly 6 years of his or her lifetime dreaming!
24. According to psychologists, daydreaming is an outcome of dreams that occur at night during sleep. However, these two types of dreams have different mental processes.
25. Scientific studies have revealed that animals (mammals in particular) are dreamers like humans. If you have a pet dog or a cat, watch him or her sleeping and you will realize that your pet is actually dreaming.
26. There is not even one single person on this earth who never dreams. We are definitely not counting people with psychological disorders. People who say that they don’t dream actually end up forgetting their dream.
27. On an average, a person may dream for nearly two hours every night and can see up to 7 dreams in a single night!
28. There is something known as Lucid Dreaming. It is a type of dream where a person is subconsciously aware of the fact that he or she is dreaming and is able to control the beginning as well as ending of the dream.
29. Lucid Dreaming can lead to a stage where sensations become so strong (as strong as in real life) that it can lead to real orgasm.
30. Snoring and dreaming cannot take place together. So, if a person is snoring while sleeping, he or she is not dreaming.
Interesting Facts About Dreams: 31-35
31. While dreaming, both men and women experience sexual physical reactions even if their dreams are not sexual in nature. For women, blood flow in their vagina increases and men on the other hand experience erection. These sexual changes usually take place during the REM phase of sleep.
32. Dreams are mostly symbolic in nature. If you see a particular thing your dream will not literally signify what you see. Your dream will be symbolic to something else.
33. There is something known as semi-dreamlike state. If a person wakes up from a nice dream and stays put in his or her position without moving a muscle, he or she may still linger in the dream for a few minutes. This happens because the position in which a person wakes up is the position in which he or she was dreaming. The moment the person moves, he or she immediately gets disconnected from the dream.
34. We mentioned earlier that dreams are symbolic. Teeth and mouth appearing in a dream may signify words or communication. If a dream (good one or a nightmare) is recurring in nature, it may be our mind’s way to tell us something and we need to understand the underlying meaning of the dream in order to get rid of the dream.
35. Throughout night, humans dream every 90 minutes. Every new cycle of dream becomes longer than the previous dream. Usually, the first dream of the night lasts for only 5 minutes and the last dream of the night may be as long as 60 minutes. With this count, an average person will have more than 100,000 dreams throughout his or her lifetime.
That concludes our list of 35 interesting facts about dreams. Do you know some more? Will you like to share some of your wildest dreams if you manage to remember one? We will love to know!
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