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What Your Dream Says about You

By Thomas Harrison   |   Posted in Sleep Research   |   Thursday 23rd October 2014

What Your Dream Says about You

The interpretation of our dreams has become a very popular subject in recent years, although the origins of dream interpretation can be traced as far back as ancient Egypt where dream meanings were depicted using hieroglyphics. As a society, we’re always striving for self-evaluation and self-improvement, and analysing dreams can be a way of discovering how you’re really feeling inside. However, dream interpretation is not without its critics and analysis shouldn’t always be taken literally – our own research found that people were only really likely to believe the meaning of a dream if it was a positive meaning, opting to discard any negative analysis. Although dream interpretation is only really just guesswork, it can offer some good insights about your own personality, so read on to discover what your dream could be saying about you…

What is a dream and what purpose do they serve?what your dream says about you...

This is a question that has no definitive answer – scientists are yet to fully understand why we even sleep in the first place, and dreaming still remains somewhat of a mystery although there are numerous theories. A dream is a series of thoughts, images and sensations experienced during sleep, and are most likely to occur during stage 5 of our sleep cycle, which is also the deepest stage of sleep. During stage 5 REM sleep, the brain is more active than its waking state, firing off millions of electrical signals and it is widely believed that it is our mind’s attempt to interpret these seemingly-random signals that causes a dream.

Although the medical world at least some small idea about what a dream is, the question of why we dream remains unanswered. One common theory is that dreams serve to store and consolidate our memories – it has already been proven that sleep facilitates long-term memory consolidation, and perhaps dreaming is how we achieve this. In this theory, the dream is a by-product of the brain sifting through all the new information it received that day, and the fact that we often dream about topics encountered the previous day supports this argument. Another interesting theory is that dreaming evolved as a defence mechanism, whereby the simulation of threatening situations in our dreams made us more prepared to deal with them in real life. It may be the case that we’ll never have definitive answers about dreaming, but the subject is a real phenomenon to the scientific world.

Common dreams and their meaning

Flying unaided – This dream can be a truly exhilarating experience, and is a dream lucid dreamers aim to achieve. If you’re flying with ease then it could mean that you have everything under control at your current stage in life, and you’re on top of the whole situation. However, if you’re having to manoeuvre difficult obstacles or are struggling to stay in the air, then this can mean you’re losing control of a situation, or there’s someone or something getting in the way of your quest for happiness.

Falling – This can mean that you’re frightened to let go of something, whether that be a relationship, a loved one, or a job. People who experience this dream often report that they always wake up just as they’re about to hit the ground. It is believed that this is because something as life-threatening as falling gets the adrenaline pumping through the body, and because adrenaline is a stimulant, it brings you out of your sleepy state.

Teeth falling out – Dreaming about your teeth crumbling or falling out can be a harrowing experience, and the realisation upon awakening that it was just a dream comes as a massive sense of relief. This dream represents a fear of growing old or ageing, with crumbling teeth signifying losing attractiveness to the opposite sex. This dream may also indicate that you’re insecure or that you sometimes feel inadequate.

Being chased – If this is a recurring dream, this would suggest that you have some fears and anxieties in your life at present. In the dream, you may be being chased by an object, a person, a monster or an animal, but if the thing chasing you isn’t known then this could represent you wanting to run from the negative traits of your own personality. Running away in a dream suggests that you don’t confront your own difficulties head-on in your waking life, opting to run away from your problems rather than fighting them and overcoming them.

Death – Dreaming about a bereavement could suggest that you’re keeping your feelings bottled up and you need to express your feelings to others more often. Death or a burial can also represent the end of something significant in your life or that you’ve finally freed yourself from a particular situation.being late is a common dream.

Being late – This is a dream most people have experienced. You might be running late for school, an exam or an important meeting, creating a huge sense of panic in your sleep. It is believed that this dream means you’re feeling too much pressure, or taking on more than you can handle in your life and you’re frustrated because of it. Alternatively, this dream can represent regretting a missed opportunity or wishing you could have another go at something that didn’t go as well as you had hoped. If this dream is a regular occurrence, it could mean you’re too stressed at present and need to distance yourself from those stress-causing situations

Drowning – Drowning could suggest your own anxieties about ‘struggling to keep your head above the water’ in your waking life, or perhaps you feel overwhelmed or ‘out of your depth’ with your current job or a relationship. Dreaming of drowning signifies struggling to cope, so you’ll need to audit the big aspects of your life and decide how well you’re coping with them.

Being naked in public – Dreaming of being naked in public may represent feeling vulnerable or exposed – perhaps you’re in a sticky situation or someone knows something about you that you wish to remain a secret. This dream can also mean that you’re keeping a secret and are afraid of the damage it will cause if others find out.

Being trapped – In the dream you may be trapped in a room, a building or a small confined area. This could suggest a lack of freedom in your life – you may be stuck in a dead-end job or trapped in a relationship you no longer want to have. Again, this type of dream calls for some self-evaluation to decide whether you have enough freedom in your life at present.

It must be remembered that dream interpretation is purely speculative and by no means an exact science, although some highly-religious cultures significantly value its importance. However, more often than not, a dream is just a dream and doesn’t necessarily represent how you’re really feeling about your current situation in life.

What’s the strangest or most memorable dream you’ve ever had? Join in with our conversation on Facebook or Google+.




The Perfect Recovery - Memory Foam Mattresses for Sportspeople

Tuesday 21st October 2014

The Perfect Recovery - Memory Foam Mattresses for Sportspeople

When you think about sport, sleep isn’t exactly the first thing to come to mind. However, leading athletes are increasingly highlighting the role that sleep plays in their top-level performance, with deep, quality sleep now acknowledged as an absolute must for their training and recovery processes.  

Category: Memory Foam Mattresses

Read full: The Perfect Recovery - Memory Foam Mattresses for Sportspeople

6 Morning Hacks to Wake up Feeling Fresh and Ready to Go

Monday 20th October 2014

6 Morning Hacks to Wake up Feeling Fresh and Ready to Go

Having to get out of bed is arguably one of the hardest tasks of the day; “Just give me five more minutes!” But it doesn’t have to be so hard – there are a few tricks you can try to feel fresh and ready to tackle the day. Most of the content of our blog focuses on tips to fall asleep more effectively, however the process of waking up in the morning can be just as important, and just like falling asleep, it’s a process that many people aren’t doing right and are needlessly suffering by doing so. Here are 6 tips to wake up and instantly feel like the real you…

Category: Sleep Research

Read full: 6 Morning Hacks to Wake up Feeling Fresh and Ready to Go

Making an Informed Decision about Buying a New Mattress

Tuesday 14th October 2014

Making an Informed Decision about Buying a New Mattress

The time has come. You’ve decided your old mattress just won’t do anymore and you’re thinking of upgrading to something new. The signs have been showing for a while: it feels lumpy, it sags, and it’s nearing the 5 year lifespan that many mattresses don’t survive beyond. So far, so good. But it’s the next step of the mattress-buying process that people often get so, so wrong…

Category: Sleep Research

Read full: Making an Informed Decision about Buying a New Mattress

How a Memory Foam Mattress Can Improve Your Life

Monday 13th October 2014

How a Memory Foam Mattress Can Improve Your Life

Mattresses come in all shapes and sizes, and it’s hard to know which one’s best for you. One mattress material that has gained popularity in recent years is visco-elastic memory foam. Memory foam was originally developed by NASA, but nowadays it’s available to the masses and is widely used in hospitals throughout Europe due to the muscle relief and comfort it offers. Let’s take a look at how a memory foam mattress can significantly improve your night’s sleep…

Category: Sleep Research

Read full: How a Memory Foam Mattress Can Improve Your Life

5 Life Changing #SleepHacks

Wednesday 8th October 2014

5 Life Changing #SleepHacks

Is your poor sleep quality impacting on how you feel during the day? Perhaps it’s time to introduce a sleephack or two to improve your situation. Check out these common problems and their sleephack solutions.

Category: Sleep Research

Read full: 5 Life Changing #SleepHacks

Sleep through the Ages: How Our Need for Sleep Changes as We Grow Older

Wednesday 8th October 2014

Sleep through the Ages: How Our Need for Sleep Changes as We Grow Older

Your quality of sleep has a huge influence on your quality of life regardless of age, yet many people underestimate the value of a regular good night’s sleep. Our need for sleep as a young child varies drastically to our sleep requirements as an adult, but it’s equally important for adults and children to be getting the sleep they need. The following is just a general guide – everyone is different, but age is a good indicator of the quality and quantity of sleep we need.

Category: Sleep Research

Read full: Sleep through the Ages: How Our Need for Sleep Changes as We Grow Older

Animals and Sleep: How Dogs, Cats, and Other Wild Animals Get Their Rest

Monday 6th October 2014

Animals and Sleep: How Dogs, Cats, and Other Wild Animals Get Their Rest

All living creatures have a need for sleep and rejuvenation – we sleep, animals sleep, and even plants have their own form of sleep. We humans need around 8 hours per day, but what about the animal kingdom? How do they sleep? How much do they need? Let’s take a look at some examples…

Category: Sleep Research

Read full: Animals and Sleep: How Dogs, Cats, and Other Wild Animals Get Their Rest

Sleep Deprivation and Driving

Tuesday 30th September 2014

Sleep Deprivation and Driving

Have you ever felt sleepy behind the wheel? Buckle up to read just some of the ways in which sleep deprivation can affect your driving.

Category: Sleep Research

Read full: Sleep Deprivation and Driving

Sleep Paralysis: When Nightmares Become Reality

Monday 29th September 2014

Sleep Paralysis: When Nightmares Become Reality

Imagine waking up through the night unable to move, unable to talk and unable to breathe properly… pretty scary, right? Imagine all that, whilst feeling a demonic presence in the room, or even seeing a black figure standing at the end of your bed – this is sleep paralysis…

Category: Sleep Research

Read full: Sleep Paralysis: When Nightmares Become Reality

Sleep and Sports Performance

Wednesday 24th September 2014

Sleep and Sports Performance

Consistently getting a good night's sleep can significantly imporove your athletic capabilities - here's how:

Category: Sleep Research

Read full: Sleep and Sports Performance

Sleep Deprivation and Work

Tuesday 23rd September 2014

Sleep Deprivation and Work

A day at work after a bad night's sleep is always tough... here's why.

Category: Sleep Research

Read full: Sleep Deprivation and Work

You Donít Sleep Alone: The Horrifying Creatures Lurking in Your Bed

Wednesday 17th September 2014

You Donít Sleep Alone: The Horrifying Creatures Lurking in Your Bed

Your bed is one of the most private places in your life – a personal space occupied only by yourself or those dearest to you… oh and billions of dust mites, bed bugs, and bucket loads of sweat.

Category: Sleep Research

Read full: You Donít Sleep Alone: The Horrifying Creatures Lurking in Your Bed

Sleep Deprivation and Your Body

Monday 15th September 2014

Sleep Deprivation and Your Body

An infographic insight into the various ways in which sleep deprivation impacts upon your body.

Category: Sleep Research

Read full: Sleep Deprivation and Your Body

5 Things Everybody Believes (Incorrectly) about Sleep

Wednesday 10th September 2014

5 Things Everybody Believes (Incorrectly) about Sleep

Sleep is one of those subjects where personal opinion and old wives’ tales seem to outweigh the cold hard facts. Here are 5 things most people get wrong about sleep…

Category: Sleep Research

Read full: 5 Things Everybody Believes (Incorrectly) about Sleep

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