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Monday, August 10, 2009

Dept. of "Sir, I Did Not Know That": Not All Dreams Occur in REM Sleep

10 Mysteries of you: Dreams - 05 August 2009 - New Scientist
Emma Young writes:

It has recently become apparent that not all dreaming occurs in REM sleep, and there are hints that non-REM dreams have their own special function. By waking students during both REM and non-REM sleep, McNamara and colleagues have discovered that REM dreams are more story-like, with more emotion, more aggression and more unknown characters than non-REM dreams, which often involve friendly social interactions (Psychological Science, vol 16, p 130). McNamara thinks that by simulating aggressive encounters, REM dreams help us cope with real aggression, whereas non-REM dreams support cooperative behaviour.

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