If your dreams are really weird right now, this could be why
There's a reason our dreams are a little odd right now.
If you've noticed your dreams have been extra peculiar lately, you're certainly not alone.
Many people have noticed that their dreams (and nightmares) have become particularly vivid over the past year. In fact, a study published in the Journal of Sleep Research has found that the pandemic has had an impact on our sleep.
Researchers asked 90 adults in Italy to record their sleep experiences and to keep a dream diary every morning.
The study determined that people are having a hard time falling asleep and that they're remembering their dreams much more vividly as well.
Additionally, as lockdown measures gradually ease, there has been a reported increase in people dreaming about crowded places.
One of the study's authors, Serena Scarpelli from the Sapienza University of Rome said: "Our results confirmed both sleep and dream measures showed critical differences between lockdown and post-lockdown periods."
She added: "The pandemic strongly affected our sleep and dream activity. Many cross-sectional studies highlighted increased dream recall frequency, and revealed a great presence of pandemic-related content."
Outside of the Italian study, evidence suggests that our dreams have gotten weirder since the pandemic began. For instance, last May, the Google searches for "weird dreams" were on the rise.
One possible explanation for the vivid dreams is that with little going on, we're just remembering them more clearly when we wake up.
Last year, psychotherapist Philippa Perry told The Guardian: "Normally our dreams are processing ancient memories, or things that have just happened. We have so much more to process right now in terms of experience and feelings."