In this chapter, we will focus on the characteristics and content of dreams. But first several issues are explored. Does dreaming only occur in REM sleep or also in NREM sleep? How good are our memories of our dreams? And does the method of obtaining dream reports such as in the sleep lab versus “at home;” whether written, voice recorded, dictated to another person; and just who that person is, affect the report? Beyond these issues, what people typically dream about is different from what is commonly believed. Although similarities far outnumber differences, in many interesting ways women’s dreams differ from men’s dreams. Characters and their interactions and activities are a major focus of dreams. Emotions or moods are commonly present in dreams but are not often mentioned in dream recalls. Bizarreness is a striking feature present in most dreams. Children’s dreams are different from those of adults and show characteristic changes with age. A person typically has several dreams during a night of sleep that can be seen as related to a theme for that night. Other aspects explored include lucid dreaming, creativity in dreams, and how an individual can improve their dream recalls.


Dream Content Dream Recall Recurrent Dream Dream Report Dream Interpretation 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Emeritus Professor Sleep and Dreaming Laboratory and Psychology Department Luther College DecorahNorthern Colorado Sleep ConsultantsFort CollinsUSA
  2. 2.Emeritus Professor Sleep and Dreaming Laboratory and Psychology DepartmentLuther College DecorahDecorahUSA

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