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Have you had even weirder dreams than usual lately? You’re not the only one, and there’s a specific reason as to why you could be having a wilder night sleep.
According to a new study, published in the Journal of Sleep Research, the pandemic is causing people to not only struggle more with getting to sleep, but also found that people are having more vivid and unusual dreams.
Scientists are also saying that people are waking up more often and remembering their dreams better, especially during lockdown periods.
When restrictions have been lifted following a lockdown as well, there was a reported increase in the amount of dreams that featured crowded places.
Psychologist Serena Scarpelli said: "Our results confirmed both sleep and dream measures showed critical differences between lockdown and post-lockdown periods."
Ms Scarpelli, a PhD student at Sapienza University of Rome, added: "The pandemic strongly affected our sleep and dream activity.
"Many cross- sectional studies highlighted increased dream recall frequency, and revealed a great presence of pandemic-related contents."
The report was based on 90 Italian adults who kept a ‘sleep-dream dairy’ that they would fill in online each morning.
The survey occurred over two weeks, the first during full lockdown between 28th April to 4th May 2020 and the second one from 5th May to 11th May after restrictions were eased.
Ms Scarpelli said: "Subjects were asked to record at home their dream experiences, and complete a sleep-dream diary each morning."
Research also showed that the men and women aged between 19 and 41 had higher numbers of waking up during the night and more difficulty in falling asleep.
They were also more likely to recall their dreams and have more lucid dreams during lockdown than after restrictions lifted.
Ms Scarpelli said: "Also, we hypothesised the greater presence of lucid dreams during confinement could reflect the attempt to cope with the waking pandemic- experiences."
"In parallel, sleep patterns have been proven to affect dreaming during lockdown - and poor sleepers reported qualitatively richer dreams."
These dreams including scenes of being locked up to killing someone or seeing an extra-terrestrial.
So, with restrictions eased, let’s hope we’ll all be having sweeter dreams.
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