Nightmares, Insomnia, Depression

Nightmares and Insomnia Together Exacerbate Depression | Dr. Michael J. Breus.

Posted: 05/14/2014 8:03 am EDT Updated: 05/14/2014 8:59 am EDT

Nightmares can cause difficulty both to sleep and to our waking lives. Intense and distressing dreams often lead to waking at night and can create anxiety about returning to sleep. Nightmares also can have an impact on our moods the next morning, bringing anxiety and difficult emotions into the waking day. New research suggests that nightmares also have an aggravating effect on symptoms of depression, and in combination with insomnia may significantly exacerbate the severity of the mood disorder.

Researchers at Japan’s Tokyo Medical University investigated the influence of nightmares on depression, both independently and in conjunction with insomnia. They found the presence of nightmares associated with aggravating effects on depression. They also learned that the joint presence of insomnia with nightmares had a significant effect on the severity of depression.

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