Gold Member Badge


  • You're all caught up!

How to Have Better Dreams During Sleep

author image Rachel Nall
Rachel Nall began writing in 2003. She is a former managing editor for custom health publications, including physician journals. She has written for The Associated Press and "Jezebel," "Charleston," "Chatter" and "Reach" magazines. Nall is currently pursuing her Bachelor of Science in Nursing at the University of Tennessee.
How to Have Better Dreams During Sleep
Getting a good night's sleep requires proper sleep habits. Photo Credit: Photodisc/Photodisc/Getty Images

Throughout your night's sleep, you transition through two sleep phases. These include rapid eye movement or REM sleep and non-REM sleep, according to These cycles alternate every 90 minutes, and during REM sleep, you have the most vivid dreams. During this time, nightmares can occur. Nightmares can be a reflection of a stressful day, medications taken or frightening visual images observed right before you go to sleep. Because nightmares can affect the quality of your sleep, it's important to practice a sleep routine that ensures you have good dreams for a more peaceful night's sleep.

Video of the Day

Step 1

Avoid watching a scary movie or reading a frightening book before you go to sleep. You may carry this state of fear with you while you sleep, which could result in bad dreams, according to

Step 2

Establish a consistent sleep routine that ensures you get enough sleep. For adults, this is roughly between seven and eight hours per night, according to Teenagers, however, may need up to nine hours of sleep per night. Getting less than this amount of sleep can result in more vivid dreams, according to Scientific American. Sleep deprivation results in a more vivid dream state, which could cause you to sleep restlessly.

Step 3

Avoid taking medications or using other stimulants that can affect your sleep. These include alcohol, nicotine, caffeine, blood pressure medications and antidepressants, according to Scientific American. While taking these may initially suspend REM state and keep you from going into deeper stages of sleep, once you stop taking them, you will experience deeper REM sleep, which can result in nightmares, according to the National Sleep Foundation.

Step 4

Do something relaxing before going to sleep. Because stress can lead to nightmares, it's best to do an activity that helps you to feel more at ease. These include taking a soak in your bathtub, reading a book, listening to music or meditating in order to relax.

Step 5

Designate your bedroom as only for sleep and intimacy and make the bedroom as comfortable and soothing as possible. This means having a comfortable mattress with shade-blocking curtains and the room at a comfortable temperature. By ensuring that you only focus on sleep and relaxation while in your bedroom, you are likely to experience better dreams.

LiveStrong Calorie Tracker
Lose Weight. Feel Great! Change your life with MyPlate by LIVESTRONG.COM
  • Gain 2 pounds per week
  • Gain 1.5 pounds per week
  • Gain 1 pound per week
  • Gain 0.5 pound per week
  • Maintain my current weight
  • Lose 0.5 pound per week
  • Lose 1 pound per week
  • Lose 1.5 pounds per week
  • Lose 2 pounds per week
  • Female
  • Male
ft. in.


Demand Media