Why can’t we remember certain dreams?

Regardless if you’re naturally fascinated with dreams or just plainly curious why you’re always dreaming about your teeth falling out, the subconscious mind remains as one of the most puzzling things in our existence.

There are instances when you’ll have dreams that don’t make sense. Other times you’ll have pleasant ones, which you never want to end. There are also those terrifying dreams that would wake you up in the middle of the night, gasping in air and bathing in sweat. However, there are times when you’ll realize that you don’t remember any of your dreams at all. While dreams are strange themselves, dream recall is also another perplexing matter.

According to experts, the cycle, quality, and distractions around you upon waking up all serves as a critical factor when talking about dream recall.

If you’re on a period where you’re unable to re all your dreams, you’re most likely undergoing a specific phase with your rapid eye movement or REM sleep. Remember that most active dreams occur during REM sleep, which accounts for 25% of the night. It steadily lengthens as the night passes by, with its most extensive phase happening in the morning.

So, what are the culprits for failing to remember? First, the use of technology. Experts say that if you’re distracted upon waking up, be it someone forcing you to get up, a phone call, or radio news, chances are your dreams would be wiped out. Second, it’s possible that the dreams you’re having aren’t just memorable.

So, if you don’t recall your dreams or you’re experiencing nightmares alone, working to have better quality sleep will be the best solution.

Experts added that if you’re not getting ample hours of sleep, you compromise a considerable portion of your REM sleep, the phase when a person experiences the most memorable and intense dreams.

With that, they also said that the sleep phase also plays a role in whether you’ll recall the entire dream or just snippets of it. Some dreams seemed so genuine and connected to your daily living. However, there are also times when you would only remember bits of your dream. This is because different kinds of dreams occur in the various stages of sleep.

At first, it was believed that plot-based dreams only happen during REM sleep, regardless if it is realistic or somewhat odd. However, it has been recently challenged, which means dreams may also occur during non-REM sleep. The difference is that dreams in the latter phase tend to be less plot-based and anchors on scenes and feelings.

Lastly, keep in mind that even if you don’t recall your dreams, chances are you still have them. Most active dreaming happens during the REM phase, and it is relatively rare for a person to have no REM at all. It can happen, though, in cases such as severe sleep apnea. With that, experts inferred that they are most likely dreams, even if they are not remembered.

Experts, however, agreed that proving a person always dreams is a difficult task to do. Although they believe that dreams involve some form of cognitive activity, they often entail only a low-level of thinking, which doesn’t consist of any plot or clear images.

What’s sure is that dreams are a complex matter to deal with, and our world still has a lot to discover about them. For now, enjoy them no matter how fun or bizarre they can be, as the experts try to solve more puzzles about our dreams.

More Readings:

Dream (Wikipedia)

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