July 18, 2012
When we end our day and go to bed, we look forward to a good night’s sleep. Some people want to experience sweet dreams during the night, but others actually prefer having a dreamless sleep. In this article, let us see the possible causes of why one does not dream.
Before elaborating about this point, let us dive into the sleeping cycle for humans. When we fall asleep, there will be a 20-25% period that we will encounter Rapid Eye Movement sleep or what we know as REM sleep. These usually occur about 4 or 5 times and we may wake up for a short time after each period of REM. Studies show that younger people experience more REM periods. During REM, our brain’s neurons act in a way that is same during waking hours and is quite active, therefore encouraging brain activities such as dreams. So if your body is not used to completing the normal sleeping cycle, it may do without REM during your sleep and may cause shortened sleeping hours. If so, consider checking with your doctor to avoid potential side effects of incomplete sleeping cycles.
2. Not eating before sleeping
When you eat before you sleep, your body will remain in a high metabolic state and this activity will cause the brain to be active too. Minimize activities during the evening and eat a few hours before you sleep as these may bring about dreams, or worse, nightmares!
3. Sleeping when tired or sleepy
Most of us will have a refreshing sleep if we lie down when our body feels tired or sleepy. We have to listen to our body and get used to its signals so we can catch the optimum period of when we should sleep. When we zone in on that optimum period, lying down and finally sleeping will most probably promote a dreamless and uninterrupted sleep.
4. Sleeping in absolute darkness
Darkness signals our brain that it is night time and time to sleep. Because we are non-nocturnal, the best environment for sleep is a dark, quiet room. Rays of light may stimulate our brains while we sleep, and may therefore trigger dreams during the night.
5. Living a relaxed and emotionally balanced life
If you want a dreamless sleep, make your mind and body feel loved and happy by observing habits that promote relaxation and peace. Maintain a positive attitude and have a good relationship with the people around you. A life full of work and stress will promote possible nightmares, more so if we deal with our problems right before we sleep. If you want to sleep and rest without dreams, take a few minutes to meditate and clear your mind of anxieties before climbing into bed.
Dreams can certainly bring about an interesting night, but after a long day at work or school, most of us prefer sleep that simply recharges us – no frills, no surprises. Go over these 5 reasons to maximize chances of a peaceful, dreamless sleep!