I left my daughter to die in our backyard pool. I walked down the aisle towards a man who wasn’t my husband. There were frogs everywhere since then, and now more recently this stranger threw me over their head with no remorse for anything they had done previously that day—after all, it was just some girl from a small town like mine with nothing better to do than wander around outside without her contacts!
Then, I wake up from the nightmare.
I’ve had a series of increasingly strange and terrifying dreams over the last few weeks. My parents, sister, husband—even my four-year old daughter are waking up from vivid nightmares that leave them shaken. As I began to research this phenomenon more thoroughly in April following COVID-19’s spread across America (with no end in sight), it became clear why we were all so sleep deprived:
I don’t know how much longer I can go on without restful slumber before my mental health begins deteriorating as well!
A study published in the Journal Nature found a correlation between increased total sleep and improved performance for subjects who slept more than six hours per night, as well as those with an average amount of time spent asleep (between seven to eight hours). The theory is backed up by data from other studies showing how REM cycles stop during periods when one does not get enough rest or spends too much time awake.
Sleep experts and psychologists have been studying the connection between sleep duration, REM density (frequency of rapid eye movements), and dreaming for years. Clinical psychologist Candice Alfano has found that a large segment of people who are working from home or may be on reduced work hours tend to stay in bed longer than they would if they were at an office with set 9-to-5 hours. Dreaming occurs during REM sleep which is mostly limited to the second half of our nightly slumber when you’re asleep long enough!
Clinical psychologist Candice Alfano, Ph.D., says that the longer and “denser” a person’s REM sleep becomes (REM density refers to the frequency of rapid eye movements which experts believe is a reflection of how elaborate and detailed dreaming imagery is), due to an increase in time slept per night from shortened work hours or working at home.
The first half hour after waking up are also known as Rapid Eye Movement Sleep because this period has high levels of activity within it; however, she asserts that dreams occur during both periods for most people with only 10-15% experiencing unusually long NREM cycles without any reports on dream content whatsoever.
The theory that working from home gives you more time for morning REM sleep is true for me. My typical routine in the past was to wake up at 5:30 a.m., shower, dry my hair and put on makeup before taking two daughters with me to daycare (waking them fully), which meant I had less opportunity for deep sleep during this needed hour of rest after waking up early. Now since starting work-from-home status three months ago, I turn off my alarm without feeling groggy or tired while drinking coffee by myself every morning knowing both children are already safely dropped off at their respective schools through car pools organized by our school district—giving me ample chance when they’re all asleep again once we get back home later.
In the time of corona, we are in an endless panic attack. Our dreams reflect that fact and show us what our subconscious is thinking about when it has a moment to breathe.
In this case study there was not one dreamer who had any anxiety relief from their nightmare; they were all just as bad or worse than before with more violence incorporated into them such as knives being used instead of guns which would have been expected given how weapons on Earth changed during those years following World War II due to technology advancements like plastics, miniaturization etcetera…
Deirdre Barrett, Ph.D., a dream expert who teaches part-time at Harvard Medical School is currently collecting descriptions of dreams from the general public and recently published her findings in Pandemic Dreams which has so many interesting connections to your own life that you may find yourself dreaming about it instead!
The COVID-19 pandemic has been a waking nightmare for many, but some people have found solace in their dreams.
Early on during the disease’s onset, Barrett noticed that most of her clients dreamed about contracting it themselves; later she observed clusters of dreams related to secondary effects from the virus such as lack child care and loss of employment. One person even had themself banished to outer space!
John Barrett, a social psychologist and director of the Lab for Dreams at Boston College’s psychology department, has found that as COVID-19 progresses through time people are dreaming about different aspects. Early dreams were dominated by deep fears stemming from fear of contracting it while later ones have been focused on secondary effects like loss of employment or isolation in lockdown to protect against infection risk.
John Barrett is a Social Psychologist with an interest in dream analysis who specializes at Boston College’s Psychology Department lab called The Lab for Dreams (LABD). He had noticed many changes over time when he studied patient reports collected since the onset of pandemic - mainly due to his patients’ differing levels/types and intensity addressing their own personal issues related to this virus.
Barrett has seen his dreams change as time passes. His recent nightmares reflect a fear of the spread of disease and unsanitary environments, with germs playing significant roles in these scenarios.
In the past, studies on dreams during crises have been conducted after 9/11 and in Nazi prison camps. Another study was done looking at Kuwaiti citizens when they were occupied by Iraqi forces between 1990-1991 to see how their nighttime visions changed with stress levels. Viewing these results has shown that experiencing troubling nightmares is no exception for people under high amounts of pressure or trauma - it’s often more frequent than usual!
Barrett has found that many people during and after a crisis, report dreams about bugs.
Dr. Barrett has come to expect nightmares in her line of work; but what she encountered with health care workers who are stationed at emergency rooms and ICUs was a whole other ball game, because their terrifying dreams reminded Dr. Barrett of those from first responders after 9/11!
During these days of the pandemic, there are also several people have dreamed of Coronavirus COVID-19, let’s understand what it means!
Meaning Of Dreaming That you Have Coronavirus: Covid-19 Nightmares
It is inevitable to have nightmares in these weeks in which the whole world lives pending the coronavirus pandemic. For this reason, dreaming that I have coronavirus has become one of the most frequent dreams. And more than a dream, it is a nightmare. And the truth is that without being a premonitory dream, it can come true. But what does it mean to dream of the coronavirus? We tell you all the interpretations of this dream experience in our dream dictionary.
Why Do You Dream Of The Coronavirus COVID-19?
There is an apparent reason why you dream that you have coronavirus, and that is that you are turning the subject around all day. Nobody escapes from this over-information on television, on the radio, or social networks. The coronavirus has become the only protagonist of our life and also of our dreams. As is often the case, worries that haunt you during the day turn into dreams or nightmares at night.
And dreaming of having coronavirus is a nightmare that can also come true. But before this virus came to turn our whole lives upside down, we already dreamed of epidemics and diseases, and they were also nightmares. The nightmares related to health include universal fears and talk about the fear of getting sick, death, or losing our loved ones.
You may have this dream in which you have coronavirus because, during the day, you have suggested yourself. And the fear of getting sick is as logical as the danger we all have is accurate. But this does not mean that you can use the dream with the coronavirus in the same way you treat the rest of your nightmares. That is, use it to face your fears and also so that that fear loses intensity.
Many experts in dreams assure that we have nightmares to express and channel our most negative emotions and thus be able to reduce the impact they have on our life. So don’t take this Covid-19 nightmare as a disgrace or a disaster that hasn’t let you rest all night. Take it as a dream test: What would you do if you are a nurse or a doctor? How would you handle it? And most importantly, what can you do to prevent the spread of coronavirus? Because this nightmare can come true, we will not deny that, but it is also true that you will come out of it much more substantial.
And you? Have you dreamed of the coronavirus these days?