Some nightmares occur due to poor lifestyle or when a traumatic event occurs such as a death, accident, or illness. Various prescriptions or medications such as anti-depressants or malaria pills may cause hallucinogenic dreams or nightmares. Those who suffer from depression, anxiety, or PTSD often find themselves with these terrible dreams. Below are simple and easy to follow steps to avoid nightmares.
Clean up Your Diet
Unhealthy eating affects more than just weight, it also affects the quality of our sleep. When there is a lack of sleep, sometimes nightmares weasel their way into our mind due to exhaustion or fear. Excessive greasy food or late night spicy meals disrupt the digestive process, which may trigger nightmares.
Relax Your Body
Drink herbal tea, take a warm bath or meditate before bedtime. Those who are constantly on the go end up with not enough sleep and are often restless in bed. A relaxed mind and body leads to more pleasant sleeping and dreams. White noise or nature sounds aid in sleep quality.
Calm Your Stressors
Chronic stress triggers nightmares, and when the body is chronically stressed vital nutrients are secreted to help the fight or flight response instead of being used for its function. Stress leads to worries, worries lead to nightmares. Decompress your day through yoga, reading, or journaling so it doesn’t go to bed with you.
Lack of hydration leads a variety of issues in the physical, but also, the mental body. Develop a habit to drink a glass of water upon waking up and continue to drink throughout the day. Avoid the chugging of water before going to bed.
Avoid Bad News
Late night horror flicks, graphic violence, evening news, or violent video games can trigger the mind to reflect on the previously watched episode in the dream state. Those who suffer from chronic nightmares need to remove these scenarios especially watching right before bed. Some nightmares are triggered from PTSD, so whatever triggers those bad memories, avoid watching it on the television.
Kick out the Bad Habits
Smoking and excessive alcohol consumption disrupt quality of sleep and regular sleep patterns. Drugs are not essential for healthy living and drug use is often linked to nightmares and estranged sleep. Nicotine is also linked to sleep disorders.
Talk to Your Doctor
Your doctor or sleep specialist can detect if any of your medication or pills cause nightmares. Various anti-depressant side effects include nightmares or night terrors. Any changes to new pills or dosages may trigger nightmares before your body is able to readjust.
Journal Your Dreams
Log your dreams to analyze what type of nightmares you experience. This helps interpret any fears or traumatic past experiences. This is a good place to write an intention on wanting positive, healthy dreams.