Sleep experts are still fascinated by the field of dreams, an area which we still know relatively little about. The mysteries behind why we dream, how long do dreams last, and what we dream have all been looked into to try and uncover the reason for this phenomenon.
While we don’t know a whole lot, what we do know is that dreams can make up an important aspect of our subconscious. Coupled with proper sleep hygiene and the best mattress you can find for your sleep position, your dreams make up a vital part of your wellbeing. Here’s everything you need to know about dreaming:
Duration – How Long Do Dreams Last?
One of the big mysteries behind dreaming is trying to figure out how long a dream actually lasts. If you’re wondering how long do dreams last, in reality, the answer lies somewhere in the range of two hours over the course of your sleep.
One of the most interesting things about this is that some dreams can actually feel a lot longer than they actually last in real-time. According to one report by the National Sleep Foundation, the average person dreams four to six times every night.
Why We Don’t Remember Our Dreams
According to another report by the National Sleep Foundation, approximately 95% of all dreams are forgotten quickly after a person wakes up. In one 2016 study, researchers reported that the ‘brain scans of sleeping individuals have shown that the frontal lobes – the area that plays a key role in memory formation – are inactive during rapid eye movement (REM) sleep, the stage in which dreaming occurs’ – which could explain why so many of us forget our dreams so quickly.
Another fun fact about dreaming? Some people cannot dream in color – while most of us can’t distinguish dreams from reality, other people dream only in black and white.
When Do We Dream?
Most people dream during REM sleep, which is a stage of sleep that recurs every two hours in your sleep cycle. Your first stage of REM sleep is entered about 90 minutes after you fall asleep, during which you remain in it for only about five minutes.
If you get the recommended eight hours of sleep every night, that means you spend a quarter of your sleep cycle in REM sleep. This is why two hours is the general estimate you’re given if you’re wondering how long do dreams last. In order to ensure you’re supporting yourself adequately in your sleep to achieve these times, you’ll want to invest in the best mattress you can for your rest.
The best mattresses are not only going to help you fall asleep quicker, thereby letting you lapse into the dream-world sooner, they are also vital to just your general wellbeing. The best mattresses tend to strike that balance between support and comfort, thereby keeping you feeling well-rested and recharged through the night.
So how can you tell if something’s the best mattress for you? Trial and error is the best approach, and the best mattress companies usually come with warranty periods that allow you to protect your purchase.
If you’re wondering how long do dreams last, and you can’t seem to figure out why you might not be aligning with around the two-hour mark, try keeping a dream journal to record exactly when and how you might be dreaming. Ultimately, everyone has their own version of normal, so don’t worry if you feel like you’re dreaming under or over the average amount a person does. Just be sure to get eight hours of sleep each night, and your brain will take care of the rest.