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16 votes
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How long do dreams last?

In experiments conducted in the 1950's, William C. Dement, a pioneer sleep researcher, asked subjects to write down their dream content. What he found was that the number of words in the subjects' ...
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15 votes

Why do dreams lose clarity quickly over time after we awaken?

Short answer: Because areas of the brain needed for remembering are turned off during dreaming. Dream Amnesia: The process of converting perception into a memory construct that can be stored is ...
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14 votes
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How do the blind dream?

You may want to read Meaidi et al (2014). They obtained dream reports from congenitally blind, late blind, and matched sighted controls. To quote the abstract, they found: All blind participants ...
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13 votes
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Why do we wake up when we die in our dreams?

When you dream you're in REM sleep (rapid eye movement). REM sleep is only slightly more "deep" than stage 1 of non-REM which means it's not that hard to wake you up in the first place. Dying in a ...
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9 votes

How long do dreams last?

I would like to bring up that there is also an opposite study about sleep duration than described in the previous answer. Daniel Erlacher at the University of Bern conducted an experiment to analyze ...
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8 votes

Why dreams can be surprising?

Let's first dispel this myth: "all the things that could happen in a dream are made up by us, and should be utterly predictable". This is a common fallacy known as the introspection illusion: The ...
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8 votes

Why do we always wake up at the climax of our dreams, even when it is an alarm that wakes us?

There are two possibilities. One is that we do tend to wake up more at the climax of dreams, and that somehow our dreams can sync up with external input like an alarm clock so that the climax of the ...
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7 votes

Why do dreams lose clarity quickly over time after we awaken?

State dependent memory could play a role in quickly forgetting dreams after awakening. See my question here: What is the scientific term for unexpected, spontaneous dream recall? I ask about a ...
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7 votes
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Does dream recall alter the dreaming process?

Your experience with more dream following dream recall can be explained in this paper, Effect of encouragement on dream recall (Halliday, 1992). People experience lighter sleep when they recall dream ...
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7 votes
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What is the cause of frequent nightmares?

Nightmares can be defined as (Pagel, 2000): ...vivid and terrifying nocturnal episodes in which the dreamer is abruptly awakened from sleep. Typically, the dreamer wakes from REM sleep and is able ...
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7 votes
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How can someone asleep recognize a very brief sound?

Short answer The auditory system remains active during sleep. Background Filtering of sensory input during sleep is a recognized phenomenon and indeed the senses are typically lulled during sleep. ...
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6 votes

How can I dream things that are impossible?

Dreams aren't logical. Your mind is in a relaxed state when you dream. Thoughts become super-imposed and intertwined with each other. Ideas and imagination is never directly related to interpretation....
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6 votes
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Why do we wake up from sleep (from a dream) as soon as we figure out reality?

When you are dreaming, and you realize that it is a dream, the initial surprise can wake you up. However, you can build a skill for staying in the dream by anchoring yourself to simple actions in the ...
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6 votes

Do dreams repeat/continue? Or is it just a perception that a dream repeated?

Disclaimer: My answer is about recurrent dreams. I don't have any immediate sources to consult on the continuation part (and there are less references to it in literature), but I'd be very surprised ...
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6 votes
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Death from sleep deprivation, what physical mechanism is failing that makes one not to be alive anymore?

As far as I know REM is just brain running a simulation During sleep hormones and neurotransmitters shift in their quantities available along the phases of sleep: slow wave sleep, intermediate ...
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  • 577
5 votes
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What happens in the brain when conscious awareness is changed during dreaming onset?

Here is the first study with fMRI, EEG and eye-video simultaneously recorded while subjects were performing a task (Poudel et al., 2014). "fMRI analysis revealed a transient decrease in thalamic, ...
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5 votes

Bringing dreams to conscious awareness

Just speaking from personal experience, I've never experienced time distortion in my dreams as extremely as you describe. I've experienced moments scattered throughout narratives that would take ...
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5 votes
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Are there studies on the effect of nicotine patches on dream vividness and dream recall?

Here's the only one that's easy to find in google scholar, but there might be more: Page, F., Coleman, G., & Conduit, R. (2006). The effect of transdermal nicotine patches on sleep and dreams. ...
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  • 441
5 votes

When are dreams created?

The origins of dreams have been studied by many different people and your approach to understanding the origins depends on your approach, however, dreams seem to originate within the unconscious part ...
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5 votes

Do neurons fire at a faster rate during dreaming?

In REM sleep, the EEG is remarkably similar to that of the awake state (Purves et al., 2001). Although the EEG represents the synchronized activity of many neurons in the cortex, it does give us a ...
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5 votes
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Can an external stimulus change the way your dream ends?

I don't know any scientific evidence of it, but I personally have experienced it many times. I have come to think that it is due to the decreasing depth of sleep. You may know that sleep progresses ...
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4 votes
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What brain regions are activated when a dream is remembered?

Your memory of a dream would be an autobiographical memory, which is a memory system that is based on a combination of episodic memories and semantic memories. Autobiographical memories are memories ...
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4 votes

What happens in the brain when conscious awareness is changed during dreaming onset?

You're describing Hypnagogia. There has been some research on the EEG states during hypnagogia: To identify more precisely the nature of the EEG state which accompanies imagery in the transition ...
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  • 191
4 votes

Why do we always wake up at the climax of our dreams, even when it is an alarm that wakes us?

I'd reckon this can be due to the chance of you remembering the dream when you wake up. When your dream was mundane (i.e. emotionless), you probably have no reason to remember it - when awake. (see ...
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  • 141
4 votes

Does individual understanding or perception, determine dream lucidity?

I am unsure if you mean, if the ability to lucid dream comes with age? or if the type or degree of lucidity within the dream is different depending on the individual? So I will aim for a ballpark ...
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  • 2,396
4 votes
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Does the use of cannabis affect the ability to recall dreams?

Current research tells us that yes, cannabis will affect the ability to recall dreams. As for the negative - positive outcomes, it seems to be subjective. One of the few researchers in this field, ...
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4 votes

Can we interconnect with other people mentally during dreaming?

Short answer Telepathy is pseudoscience. Background I think you are referring to the phenomenon of telepathy, which can be defined as [T]he purported transmission of information from one person ...
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4 votes
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My Mind Shows Me My Future

It's a phenomenon called déjà rêvé, the French for "already dreamed": If you've ever felt like you predicted something in a dream, you might have felt it wise to keep that feeling to ...
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