Be Not Afraid: Understanding Nightmares
What are nightmares and who gets them? Nightmares are extremely upsetting dreams involving threats to an individual’s emotional or physical sense of safety or threats to loved ones, or loss of loved ones. Children, adolescents, and adults commonly have them. About 5 to 8% of the general adult population reports having nightmares once per week or more often. The lifetime prevalence for nightmares is practically 100%.
Is it abnormal to have nightmares?
To be considered a disorder, nightmares need to cause significant daytime suffering and distress. Chronic nightmares are those nightmares that persist for at least six months with one or more nightmares per week.
What causes them?
People used to believe it’s caused by demonic presence, or just an upset stomach. Others say it’s a secondary symptom related to underlying psychological issues. Nightmares seem to leave people largely helpless to cope with them successfully, or is a disturbance that would disappear only if the psychological issues are uncovered and dealt with. Some factors play a role. Early traumatic experiences (abuse, neglect), life stressors (divorce, financial worries, new job), and genetics can all play a role. In some, nightmares can be related to their personalities – particularly sensitive or highly creative or artistic. Or they can be triggered by medications ( antidepressants, barbiturates, and beta blockers).
Do nightmares have negative effects?
If you have frequent nightmares it can be associated with severe sleep disturbances, as higher rates of insomnia. There’s increased severity of psychological and psychiatric distress, suicidal thoughts, and poor physical health. By directly targeting nightmares, people can experience significant improvements not only in nightmare frequency, but also in these other spheres.
Occasional nightmares are normal and universal. Some people don’t undergo treatment, believing these dreams are just a part of who they are or make them better persons. If it’s chronic or related to trauma or some psychological issues, there are effective, non-drug treatment options. They can be acted upon.
Dream Interpretation in Lynnwood
Bothered about nightmares? Let us help you understand. It can lead to some interpretation, clarification, and perhaps open the way to dealing with them. Here at your Psychic Shop in Lynnwood.