Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Study shows dream-enacting behavior is common in healthy young adults

01.12.2009
A study in the Dec.1 issue of the journal Sleep shows that dream-enacting behaviors are common in healthy young adults, and the prevalence of specific behaviors differs between men and women.

Results indicate that 98 percent of subjects (486/495) reported experiencing one of seven subtypes of dream-enacting behavior at least "rarely" in the last year. The most prevalent behavior subtype was "fear," with 93 percent reporting that they had felt signs of fear in their body after awakening from a frightening dream.

Seventy-eight percent reported that they had awakened from an erotic dream to find that they were sexually aroused; 72 percent had awakened from a happy dream to find that they were actually smiling or laughing. Each of the other four behavior subtypes was reported by more than 50 percent of participants: They awakened from a dream to find that they were talking, crying, acting out an angry or defensive behavior such as punching or kicking, or acting out other movements such as waving or pointing. Women reported more speaking, crying, fear and smiling/laughing than men, and men reported more sexual arousal.

Lead author and co-investigator Tore Nielsen, PhD, professor of psychiatry at the Université de Montreal in Canada, was surprised by the high prevalence of dream-enacting behavior. Nielsen noted that more studies will need to be conducted to create a distinction between normal dream-enacting behavior and actions that are associated with REM sleep behavior disorder (RBD), which is characterized by abnormal behaviors emerging during rapid eye movement (REM) sleep that cause injury or sleep disruption.

"Normal episodes are usually extremely mild, for example, briefly jerking an arm or leg while waking up from a nightmare, once or twice a year," said Nielsen. "This is far different from RBD cases, which are typically very intense, and might involve repeatedly flailing an arm or a leg or smashing into something in the middle of a dream, not waking up easily from it, with occurrences several times a month."

A total of 1,140 first-year undergraduate students who were enrolled in introductory psychology courses voluntarily participated in the study. Approximately two-thirds were female. Participants completed several questionnaires concerning personality and dreaming.

To determine the type of questions that are best for eliciting reports of dream-enacting behavior, students were divided into three groups. Group one (mean age 19.9 years) was provided with general questions concerning dream-enacting behaviors, group two (mean age 20.1 years) received the same questions with examples, and group three (mean age 19.1 years) received questions describing specific behavior subtypes. The prevalence of dream-enacting behavior increased with increasing question specificity (35.9 percent in group one, 76.7 percent in group two and 98.2 percent in group three). According to the authors, these findings suggest that dream-enacting behaviors are common in the general population but are difficult for subjects to identify if detailed descriptions of the behaviors are not given.

The study distinguished the dream-enacting behavior of speaking out loud some of the words of a dream about talking from somniloquy (sleep talking), which was defined as speaking or making sounds during sleep without clear recall of an accompanying dream. Acting out the movements of a dream was distinguished from somnambulism (sleepwalking), which was defined as moving or walking during sleep without clear recall of a dream. Almost 61 percent of subjects in group three reported experiencing somniloquy at least "rarely" in the last year, and 40.9 percent reported somnambulism.

The authors speculate that there is a possibility of a personality trait involvement and a genetically determined predisposition for frequent dream-enacting behaviors. It remains unknown whether the dream-enacting behaviors of healthy subjects may predict future RBD symptoms.

Sleep is the official journal of the Associated Professional Sleep Societies, LLC (APSS), a joint venture of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine and the Sleep Research Society. The APSS publishes original findings in areas pertaining to sleep and circadian rhythms. Sleep, a peer-reviewed scientific and medical journal, publishes 12 regular issues and 1 issue comprised of the abstracts presented at the SLEEP Meeting of the APSS.

For a copy of the study, "Dream-Enacting Behaviors in a Normal Population," or to arrange an interview with the study's author, please contact Kelly Wagner, AASM public relations coordinator, at (708) 492-0930, ext. 9331, or kwagner@aasmnet.org.

AASM is a professional membership organization dedicated to the advancement of sleep medicine and sleep-related research. As the national accrediting body for sleep disorders centers and laboratories for sleep related breathing disorders, the AASM promotes the highest standards of patient care. The organization serves its members and advances the field of sleep health care by setting the clinical standards for the field of sleep medicine, advocating for recognition, diagnosis and treatment of sleep disorders, educating professionals dedicated to providing optimal sleep health care and fostering the development and application of scientific knowledge.

Kelly Wagner | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.aasmnet.org

Further reports about: AASM APSS RBD circadian rhythm sleep sleep disorders sleep medicine

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht Real-time feedback helps save energy and water
08.02.2017 | Otto-Friedrich-Universität Bamberg

nachricht The Great Unknown: Risk-Taking Behavior in Adolescents
19.01.2017 | Max-Planck-Institut für Bildungsforschung

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Breakthrough with a chain of gold atoms

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

Im Focus: DNA repair: a new letter in the cell alphabet

Results reveal how discoveries may be hidden in scientific “blind spots”

Cells need to repair damaged DNA in our genes to prevent the development of cancer and other diseases. Our cells therefore activate and send “repair-proteins”...

Im Focus: Dresdner scientists print tomorrow’s world

The Fraunhofer IWS Dresden and Technische Universität Dresden inaugurated their jointly operated Center for Additive Manufacturing Dresden (AMCD) with a festive ceremony on February 7, 2017. Scientists from various disciplines perform research on materials, additive manufacturing processes and innovative technologies, which build up components in a layer by layer process. This technology opens up new horizons for component design and combinations of functions. For example during fabrication, electrical conductors and sensors are already able to be additively manufactured into components. They provide information about stress conditions of a product during operation.

The 3D-printing technology, or additive manufacturing as it is often called, has long made the step out of scientific research laboratories into industrial...

Im Focus: Mimicking nature's cellular architectures via 3-D printing

Research offers new level of control over the structure of 3-D printed materials

Nature does amazing things with limited design materials. Grass, for example, can support its own weight, resist strong wind loads, and recover after being...

Im Focus: Three Magnetic States for Each Hole

Nanometer-scale magnetic perforated grids could create new possibilities for computing. Together with international colleagues, scientists from the Helmholtz Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (HZDR) have shown how a cobalt grid can be reliably programmed at room temperature. In addition they discovered that for every hole ("antidot") three magnetic states can be configured. The results have been published in the journal "Scientific Reports".

Physicist Dr. Rantej Bali from the HZDR, together with scientists from Singapore and Australia, designed a special grid structure in a thin layer of cobalt in...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Booth and panel discussion – The Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings at the AAAS 2017 Annual Meeting

13.02.2017 | Event News

Complex Loading versus Hidden Reserves

10.02.2017 | Event News

International Conference on Crystal Growth in Freiburg

09.02.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Biocompatible 3-D tracking system has potential to improve robot-assisted surgery

17.02.2017 | Medical Engineering

Real-time MRI analysis powered by supercomputers

17.02.2017 | Medical Engineering

Antibiotic effective against drug-resistant bacteria in pediatric skin infections

17.02.2017 | Health and Medicine

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>