About Careers MedBlog Contact us
Medindia LOGIN REGISTER
Advertisement

Why We Dream - Explained

by Tanya Thomas on July 17, 2010 at 10:47 AM
Font : A-A+

 Why We Dream - Explained

Finally, scientists seem to have uncovered the reason behind dreams, which could prove a crucial tool for sorting and filing information and discarding mental trash, says an Australian researcher.

"One theory is that it's a way of allowing your brain to recover and consolidate all the memories and activities of the previous day, like filing time," The Daily Telegraph quoted Prof Drew Dawson from the Centre For Sleep Research at the University of South Australia, as saying.

Advertisement

He added: "If we give someone a complex new task to learn and we let them sleep but don't let them dream, they're almost as bad the next day as if they didn't sleep at all."

Many people mistakenly believe "dream sleep", or rapid eye movement (REM) sleep, is the deepest stage of sleep.

According to Prof Dawson, humans were more deeply asleep prior to dreams. The average sleeper went through several sleep cycles a night, each lasting about two hours and finishing with REM.
Advertisement

Prof Dawson said: "Your brainwaves while you're dreaming actually look very similar to your brainwaves when you are awake."

This has led some scientists to theorise that dreaming is an evolutionary survival mechanism, which helps keep our brain alert.

Prof Dawson said: "It might prevent you getting so deeply asleep that you would be vulnerable if you needed to wake up quickly."

Brainwave tests on animals demonstrate all mammals dream, however, whether dogs and cats and other species actually have visual dreams is impossible to know.

Prof Dawson said: "It's reasonable to think they probably do, but we don't know for sure."

Sleep and fatigue expert Dr Stuart Baulk believes humans were essentially paralysed when they entered dream sleep, with muscle tone changing to prevent the body moving around.

Occasionally, some people experienced "sleep paralysis", where they woke and were fully conscious but still paralysed and seeing dreamlike images.

Dr Baulk said: "Although you see the room around you like normal, you might still get the images from a dream."

Source: ANI
Advertisement

Advertisement
News A-Z
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
What's New on Medindia
Diet and Oral Health: The Sugary Connection May Become Sour
World AIDS Day 2022 - Equalize!
Test Your Knowledge on Sugar Intake and Oral Health
View all
Recommended Reading
News Archive
Date
Category
News Category

Medindia Newsletters Subscribe to our Free Newsletters!
Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.

More News on:
Sleep Disorder 

Most Popular on Medindia

Drug Interaction Checker Selfie Addiction Calculator A-Z Drug Brands in India Loram (2 mg) (Lorazepam) Accident and Trauma Care Turmeric Powder - Health Benefits, Uses & Side Effects The Essence of Yoga Blood Donation - Recipients Pregnancy Confirmation Calculator Blood Pressure Calculator
open close
ASK A DOCTOR ONLINE

×

Why We Dream - Explained Personalised Printable Document (PDF)

Please complete this form and we'll send you a personalised information that is requested

You may use this for your own reference or forward it to your friends.

Please use the information prudently. If you are not a medical doctor please remember to consult your healthcare provider as this information is not a substitute for professional advice.

Name *

Email Address *

Country *

Areas of Interests