A nightmare is a dream occurring during rapid eye movement (REM) sleep that results in feelings of strong terror, fear, stress or extreme anxiety. They become so intense they will wake you up. Bad dreams, on the other hand, are especially haunted by interpersonal conflicts


Most nightmares may be a normal reaction to stress but they are considered  a sleeping disorder when they occur frequently  and may cause the subject further fear of sleeping, which can lead to sleep deprivation and the formation of other sleeping disorders or medical or psychological conditions.

The source of a recurring nightmare may be a traumatic event. For example, returning soldiers sometimes,  they see in their dreams scenes that marked them.

Nightmares are different from sleep terrors in that they are similar to a regular dream involving images and sound, but the images often invoke fear or anxiety in the subject. Sleep terrors contain no imagery or sound, just an overwhelming sense of unshakable fear, and may also be accompanied by temporary sleep paralysis. Nightmares are only considered as such when they cause an immediate awakening from sleep, which usually occurs at the climax, or extreme point of terror of the nightmare.


Scientific research shows that nightmares may have many causes. In a study focusin

g on children, researchers were able to conclude that nightmares directly correlate with the stress in the children’s lives. Children who experienced the death

of a family member or a close friend or know someone with a chronic illness have more frequent nightmares than those who are only faced with stress from school or stress from social aspects of daily life.

Nobody likes having violent or scary dreams, these night visions may serve an important purpose for your mental health, but  a new video from New York Magazine, “the good side of bad dreams”, explains that some sleep researchers have proposed that bad dreams serve as a form of emotional release, allowing us to let go of the stresses and anxieties that disturb us in our lives.




AUTHOR: Álvaro Molina Crespo

Thanks to: Carlos Alemany Costela



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