Nightmares are realistic and terrifying dreams that break your sleep with anxiety and fear. Children are more likely to have nightmares, but one in every two adults suffers them occasionally. Nightmares affect between 2% and 8% of adults. Nightmares are more common during rapid eye movement (REM) sleep, which is when the majority of dreaming occurs. Nightmares may occur more frequently in the early hours of the morning because REM sleep lasts longer as the night goes on. Using quality mattresses from companies like American Beds can reduce your nightmare experiences to an extent because you can comfortably sleep on such beds.
Even though the topics of dreams differ from one person to the next, there are several common nightmares that many individuals experience. Many adults, for example, experience nightmares about not being able to escape danger quickly enough or falling from a great height. If you have experienced a traumatic occurrence, such as an attack or an accident, you can have nightmares related to it.
Although both nightmares and night terrors cause people to wake up disturbed or terrified, they are not the same. Night terrors usually strike within the first few hours of sleeping. Because they are felt rather than dreamed, people do not remember why they are afraid when they wake up.
Doctors call nightmarish disorder a parasomnia, which is a sort of sleep disorder in which you have unpleasant experiences when you fall asleep, sleep, or wake up. During Rapid eye movement (REM) sleep is when nightmares are most likely to occur. The causes of nightmares are still unknown. Many factors trigger nightmares, such as:
Anxiety or stress: Nightmares might be triggered by everyday concerns, such as a problem at home or at school. A substantial change, such as relocating or losing a loved one, might have the same impact. Anxiety is linked to an increased likelihood of nightmares. Using pocket spring mattresses and adjustable beds can make you feel relaxed and provide comfortable sleep.
Trauma: The chances of occurring nightmares are high after an accident, injury, physical or sexual abuse, or another traumatic event. People with post-traumatic stress disorder frequently suffer nightmares (PTSD).
Sleep deprivation: Sleep deprivation is a problem that many people face. Changes in your schedule that induce irregular sleeping and waking hours, or interrupt or diminish the quantity of sleep you get, can make you more prone to nightmares. Nightmares are more common in people who suffer from insomnia. First-class mattress stores in Bahrain like American Beds provide premium quality beds to people who have sleep problems.
Medications: Certain medicines might cause nightmares. They are antidepressants, blood pressure medications, beta blockers, and medications for Parkinson’s disease or quitting smoking.
Substance misuse: Nightmares can be caused by alcohol and recreational drug misuse, as well as withdrawal from these substances.
Other health issues include: Nightmares may be connected to depression and other mental health problems. Some diseases, such as heart disease or cancer, can cause nightmarish experiences. Having nightmares can be linked to other sleep issues that prevent you from getting enough sleep.
Scary books and films: Reading terrifying books or watching scary movies before bedtime might trigger nightmares for some people.
In most cases, there is no need for treatment for nightmares. If your nightmares are giving you anxiety or disrupting your sleep and interfering with your daytime functioning, treatment may be necessary. Treatment depends on the source of the nightmare condition. The following are some treatment options:
- Medical treatment
- Stress and anxiety treatment
- Imagery rehearsal therapy