Nightmares are just the opposite of sweet dreams. They tend to wake us up from our sleep and after which we have disturbed sleep or no sleep at all. Nightmares can be extremely unpleasant and can cause us anxiety and fear due to which we might not be able to go back to sleep again. It is important to understand the cause of the nightmare before you begin to treat them. Follow the following steps in order to prevent nightmares affecting your sleep and making you scared.
Know that it’s relatively normal to get nightmares as an adult. A lot of people associate nightmares with children, believing they are something you grow out of. However, it is not uncommon for adults and teens to experience nightmares as well
Understand the difference between nightmares and night terrors. Nightmares and night terrors are two different types of sleep disturbances which are sometimes confused.
Nightmares tend to occur during REM sleep, so you will usually experience them in the early hours of the morning. They are experienced as frightening or disturbing dreams which seem vividly real as they occur.
Night terrors occur during the deeper stages of sleep and so tend to occur in the first few hours of going to bed. They are experienced as an intense feeling of fear, which is not accompanied by dreams or images.
Understand that nightmares can be the symptom of a larger problem. Although nightmares in adults often happen spontaneously with no serious underlying cause, sometimes nightmares will be the result of psychological conditions such as anxiety, depression or post-traumatic stress disorder
Treat any underlying disorders. If your nightmares are the result of an underlying condition such as sleep apnea or restless leg symptom, receiving treatment for these conditions should help to reduce nightmares.
Avoid eating before bed. Eating before bed can trigger nightmares, as food speeds up your metabolism and sends signals to your brain to become more active.
Reduce stress. Stress can contribute to nightmares, so take some time relax throughout the day and aim to go to bed with a calm, clear mind.
Talk to your doctor about any medications you’re taking
Improve your sleep
Find a happy place
Think happy thoughts