Sound Sleep Guru

Nightmares and Pandemic Dreams

I don’t know about you but the stress of the COVID-19 pandemic has definitely been making me have more vivid dreams and even mild anxiety dreams.⁣⁣ Anxiety dreams are also known as nightmares and are usually recurring dreams that contain disturbing mental experiences and result in an awakening. ⁣⁣The emotions involved can be anxiety, fear, terror, anger, rage, embarrassment, disgust, or other negative feelings.⁣⁣ There is usually an imminent physical threat or danger in the plot of the dream with the ability to remember and clearly recall the circumstances. ⁣⁣

🔸 50%-80% of adults report having at least one nightmare⁣⁣
🔸 2%-8% of the population has recurrent nightmares ⁣⁣
🔸 10%-50% of three to five year old have nightmares that are significant to parents⁣⁣
🔸 More common in the setting of PTSD or trauma⁣⁣

✅ Severe nightmares may require medical treatment.⁣⁣
✅ Dr. Barry Krakow developed image rehearsal therapy (IRT) for treating recurrent nightmares.
✅ IRT consists of writing down the dream and then creating an alternate ending with a positive outcome that is rehearsed again and again.

A few years ago I had a patient that had a recurring dream that his house was burning down and he was not able to save his pets and family. I guided him through IRT and he was able to change the outcome of his dream. IRT is a neat treatment!

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