Tips On How To Remember Dreams For Better Health

Girl sleeping
Remembering positive dreams can optimize your physical and mental health. Gordana Adamovic-Mladenovic

The sound of an alarm clock can lead you to wake up in a frenzy and bring you back to reality — far away from your dreams, 99 percent of which are not remembered. A dream is thought to be a byproduct of sleep, but in reality it is a window to your subconscious that can address issues you are not confronting while you're awake. According to the University of California Santa Cruz, people over the age of 10 dream at least four to six times per night during rapid eye movements (REM) sleep, which helps the brain's ability to store memories. During the later stages of REM sleep, dreams can last at least half an hour or more and delve into your current concerns and preoccupations. While you may view your dreams as bizarre and nonsensical, they serve as a strong indicator for your physical and mental health. Kelly Sullivan Walden, author of It's All in Your Dreams, said on The Dr. Oz Show that it is important to control your dreams in order to benefit your health. The idea of not paying attention to your dreams can be detrimental to your health because they often provide symbolism that can improve your overall wellbeing.

While the inability to remember dreams is a shared frustration among most dreamers, everyone can be their own dream catcher. Dreams allow for the opportunity to process everything that went on during the day and what lingers in your subconscious. Walden reveals that the subconscious holds 88 percent of the mind's total power, allowing individuals to take the subconscious mind and use their dreams to tap into it. The reason individuals do not remember their dreams is because they sleep right through them and are not focused enough to remember anything after waking up. It's time to dream yourself to a better health. Walden shares several tips on how you can remember your dreams.

Remain In Your Sleep Position When You Wake Up

When you wake up in the morning, your first impulse is to stretch your muscles and put your hand over your mouth to yawn. Walden says that this is the easiest way to forget a positive dream that you wish to remember. Within the first five minutes of sleep, she suggests to remain in your sleep position with your eyes closed and ask yourself "What was I just dreaming about?" three consecutive times. These five minutes provide you with a window of opportunity to recall your dream before it dissipates into your subconscious.

Take Vitamin B6 To Boost Your Memory

Vitamin B6 has been linked to improved memory retention and better brain health, says Mayo Clinic. Dr Lisa Medalie, a sleep behavior specialist, said on The Dr. Oz Show that vitamin B6 supplements will improve your memory and help you remember your dreams because it increases the level of serotonin in the body, allowing you to have dream clarity as you sleep. Medalie suggest to take half of the vitamin in the morning and the other half in the evening.

Health Benefits of Remembering Your Dreams

Your brain's activity levels while you sleep can be just as active as when you are awake. The importance of remembering dreams will allow you to be able to identify what your dreams are trying to tell you about your health.

Reduced Cortisol And Stress Levels

The ability to remember positive dreams can affect your cortisol levels — the body's primary stress hormone. Cortisol reduces when you recall vivid dreams, which results in lowered stress levels. Your mind and body can easily be affected by stress levels if they are high, and so remembering dreams can lead to less stress and a happier and healthier you.

Weight Loss

You can dream yourself thin to help you shed the fat. Walden suggests to take a few minutes before you fall asleep to think about positive thoughts to send to your subconscious. For weight loss, you can look at a picture of the body figure you want to attain, and your dreams will dictate the process of getting there. The picture provides a mental aspect for your dream, which is vital and has been linked to boosted metabolism.

Reduced Risk Of Obesity And Cancer

Nightmares can cause panic, fear, and loss of a good night's sleep. According to the National Sleep Foundation, eight hours of sleep is suggested for normal, healthy adults. A recurring nightmare can lead to a series of health problems like obesity and cancer, said Medalie. To prevent these illnesses, she recommends a technique called rescripting — rewriting the ending to your nightmare. The outcome of your dream will change if you repeat the ending in your mind over and over again throughout the day. Facing your fears and controlling your dreams can provide you with clarity of your mind, body, and soul.

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