How To Avoid Getting Nightmares
If you’ve been rudely awakened by a terrible dream, you know how long it can take for you to fall asleep again. You feel the real impact when it affects you emotionally, and you tend to get flashbacks during the day.
This can be a devastating experience for anyone. If this has been happening to you for some time, it means there’s a part of your life that needs healing or a positive change.
Worry not, nightmares are common and they are completely treatable. You can take simple, yet deeply effective techniques from today and slowly stop getting those terrifying nightmares.
Keep reading to fully understand why you get nightmares and how you can avoid them.
What Happens In the Brain During Nightmares?
Nightmares are terrifying dreams that cause you to wake up. They may evoke feelings of terror, fear, distress, and anxiety and get you shaken up. If you have long pent-up frustration, fear of impending doom, anger, or grief, you are likely to experience nightmares.
They begin to form between REM intervals, especially when our body and mind are between the sleep and wake cusp. This is why we tend to remember nightmares vividly.
Our brains help us dream to familiarise us with plausible imaginary, negative scenarios and troubling events, so that we may handle them better when they really happen.
When we dream, our brain processes the dream content and helps us reduce emotional impact through a mechanism called fear-memory extinction. During nightmares, this ability of your brain is compromised due to various factors, due to which the fear element is intensified.
They threaten your survival, security, physical integrity and self-esteem, which is why you’re petrified.
Who’s More Likely to Get Nightmares?
Studies reveal that children and young adults tend to get more nightmares than others because their amygdala is more developed than their pre-frontal structures that handle emotional regulation.
People who have experienced a life-altering traumatic event recently are more vulnerable to getting nightmares.
Other studies also state that women are more likely to experience terrifying dreams with more verbal aggression, especially pregnant women.
Disturbing Causes of Recurring Nightmares
Yes, you guessed it right. Events, body conditions, and lifestyle habits that create leave deep emotional traces can contribute to nightmares.
You’re more likely to get nightmares if you:
- Experience chronic stress
- A victim of a traumatic experience
- Anxious for many parts of the day
- An eccentric sleeper
- Drink alcohol often
- On prolonged medication
- Facing mental health problems
Escape Nightmares With These 5 Sure-shot Techniques
By reducing the factors that hamper emotional regulation in your brain, you can effectively control nightmares. Here are easy techniques to do that.
#1 Healthier Lifestyle Choices
Mild exercises before 4 hours of hitting the bed pump in refreshing and relaxing hormones that exhaust your brain and prep you for undisturbed sleep.
Take a hot shower after a sweaty workout, enjoy a warm cup of herbal tea, and a couple of hours later grab a light dinner that’s easily digestible. Create a healthy, calming sleep routine.
#2 Focus On Emotional Healing
Nightmares have a profound connection to well-being. If you’ve recently faced a traumatic event, we lovingly recommend you see a therapist. You may also find creative expression and indulge in any form of art, to release pent-up emotions from your system and improve emotional well-being in the long run.
Meditate, journal, paint, crochet, read, before bed, and make sure you aren’t overthinking or worrying. Find a way to slowly heal your psyche.
#3 Zero Caffeine, Alcohol, and Fatty Food Before Bed
Avoiding these will help you drift off much easier, relax your mind naturally and go easy on your stomach. Caffeine and alcohol can block nerve pathways in the brain and keep you awake longer, which can hamper your brain’s ability to regulate emotions.
Ensure you empty your bladder before bed, to reduce chances of waking up during sleep.
#4 Mild Music During Sleep
Surprisingly, listening to comforting music during sleep is found to make you feel safe and positive, and reduces the possibility of getting nightmares. Wondering what music to select? Our guide can help you.
#5 Go For a Comfortable, Supportive Mattress
Yes, your sleep environment determines how well you sleep. If your mattress is worn out and causing you discomfort, it will only aggravate the frustration you feel when you experience a nightmare.
Replace it with a supremely comfortable, HiGRID Sleep mattress with smartGRID Technology, which gives you sweat-free nights, 2x soft feather-like surface and offers orthopaedic support at the right places.
With conscious, healing efforts, you can certainly mitigate the impact of nightmares first, and gradually stop getting them altogether. But, it takes willpower to make emotionally and physically healthy choices. Are you ready for it?