Nightmares are dreams with frightening or disturbing content that often wakes the dreamer from sleep. Nightmares are very common, particularly in children. Possible causes include anxiety, hormonal changes, fever, headache, and disturbed sleep. Some psychologists believe that nightmares help the brain process difficult events. They are a common symptom of post-traumatic stress disorder and depression. If nightmares occur frequently and impact quality of life, they may be considered a sleep disorder.
People throughout history have searched for an explanation for the mysterious and unsettling phenomenon of nightmares. Our infographic explores nightmare mythology from around the world, nightmare meanings in different cultures, and nightmare creatures that plague sleep.
Note: The content on Sleepopolis is meant to be informative in nature, but it shouldn’t take the place of medical advice and supervision from a trained professional. If you feel you may be suffering from any sleep disorder or medical condition, please see your healthcare provider immediately.
Mythological Causes of Dreams and Nightmares
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