What did you dream about two nights ago? How about last night? Whilst we tend to remember small parts of a dream, it’s uncommon to recall the full storyline in great detail. Sometimes, we can experience an incredibly intense dream that feels just like it was real and can even be remembered the next day. These are known as vivid dreams.
Why do we dream?
Research shows that dreams can help us to consolidate our thoughts and form memories. According to this same 2019 study, visual imagery occurs more frequently in dreams than the other senses (compared to sense of smell, touch or taste). Vivid dream recall was also reported through 74-80% of participants of this study when they were woken during the rapid-eye-movement (REM) stage of sleep. This is around 90 minutes after we first drift off when brain activity is at its highest and we do most of our dreaming.
What can affect our dreams?
Female bodies releases the progesterone hormone just after ovulation during the second phase of the menstrual cycle, with levels remaining high throughout a pregnancy. Raised levels of progesterone were linked in a 2019 study to an increased recall of pleasant dreams by women in the luteal phase (second phase) of their cycle. Compared to others in the study, these participants vividly remembered more of their dreams.
2. Sleeping Position
Sleeping on your stomach could cause vivid dreams that were predominantly positive, according to a 2016 study titled ‘Obsessions At Night’ by Dr Calvin Kai-Ching Yu.
3. Feeling Hungry
As we discovered when researching TikTok tips for a good night’s sleep, our sleep can be interrupted by a drop in our blood sugar levels. Tiktok health coach Andy Jay suggested keeping glucose levels topped up throughout the night by eating a fatty or sugary snack just before bed. This avoids a drop in the melatonin hormone at around 3 or 4am which may wake you up and disturb your dreaming cycle.
Can CBD cause vivid dreams?
Whilst there is little scientific evidence concerning CBD’s link to the quality of our dreams, CBD’s connection to the quality of our sleep could be a factor in determining how we dream.
By working in harmony with the cannabinoid receptors in our body, CBD can help to balance sleep amongst other essential bodily functions, including helping to regulate our mood and appetite. Love Hemp founders, Tony Calamita and Tom Rowland, explain the benefits of adding CBD to a self-care regime before bed.
“Adding CBD to your night-time routine can have a calming effect on the mind and body which can help us to unwind after a busy day. Placing just a couple of drops of CBD oil under the tongue at bedtime is the perfect way to regulate the body in preparation for a peaceful night’s sleep.”
Stress and anxiety can also influence our dreams and the quality of our sleep. Try some of our stress-reducing tips to help improve your sleep.