Nightmares Essay

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Nightmares Most people think nightmares are nothing more. Just a simple nightmare to wake up from in the morning. Just a bad dream that will be gone by the time they eat breakfast. But this isn’t true. With every nightmare, comes a meaning. Nightmares have a meaning behind them, and a reason for starting. A nightmare is a dream with many negative emotions. The International Association for the study of dreams stated, “A nightmare is a very distressing dream which usually forces at least partial awakening. The dreamer may feel any number of disturbing emotions in a nightmare, such as anger, guilt, sadness or depression, but the most common feelings are fear and anxiety” (1). This explains how much negativity is associated with nightmares. They begin sometime in childhood and usually start lessening around or after 10. But for some people they don’t stop. Some people have them their whole life. Nightmares mainly occur during REM sleep, or rapid eye movement. The REM stages lengthen with each past cycle. But, nightmares don’t usually last very long. Not the whole night, like most people think. Yes, it seems like the dream or nightmare lasts for hours, but think about it. It’s only a small story told in a little amount of time. The mind has multiple dreams or nightmares a night, each one longer then the last. That’s why people often only remember one. And as The Mayo Clinic Staff explained, “Nightmares can be associated with another sleep disorder. Many other factors can trigger nightmares” (1), which means nightmares can be caused by a multitude of things. As stated in the last line of the paragraph above, nightmares have different causes. The causes can range from stress and anxiety to bedtime snacks. One cause is trauma. Traumatic events can often trigger nightmares, as stated here by ASD International, “Many people experience nightmares after they have

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