What do we dream and why

Why we dream

dreams are sensual experiences in sleep. The topics are linked to real events during the day - the fresher the events are, the more likely they are to be thematized in the dream. Both conflicts and pleasant experiences appear in dreams, but often in completely different contexts. People we know also appear in dream situations, and our relationships with them are revitalized. It is typical that times and places differ greatly from real life or remain indefinite.

People have always tried to interpret dreams. According to Sigmund Freud, the founder of the modern Dream research, Every dream is influenced by sensory impressions, daily experiences, childhood memories, current wishes and repressed conflicts. His dream interpretation therefore sees the dream as a kind of picture puzzle that shows the way to our unconscious. Other psychologists (like C. G. Jung) developed their own methods and rules for dream interpretation. It cannot be scientifically proven that dream interpretation has a psychotherapeutic effect; therefore their use is still controversial.

Neurobiological dream research has gained in importance in recent years thanks to new methods such as functional nuclear spin. You could prove that

  • Dreams are based on the interplay of the brain stem and cerebrum and that without the involvement of certain parts of the cerebrum no dreams can arise
  • Dreams occur in all phases of sleep, with dreams being more common in the REM phase (but, contrary to earlier views, not only occurring there)
  • With a few exceptions due to drugs or illnesses, everyone dreams, and they do so with similar frequency. Whether or not you remember your dreams, however, varies greatly from person to person. Women remember their dreams more often than men. Even those who consciously “track down” their dreams, e.g. B. by keeping a dream diary, the dream contents can be better retrieved the following day.

There is no generally accepted explanation for the function of the dream. Some experiments indicate that memory contents are solidified in the dream. Both animals and humans can better store what they have learned if they dream well the following night.

Authors

Dr. Bernadette Andre-Wallis, Dr. med. Arne Schäffler in: Gesundheit heute, edited by Dr. med. Arne Schäffler. Trias, Stuttgart, 3rd edition (2014). Revision and update: Dr. med. Sonja Kempinski | last changed on at 15:48