Sleepy Head

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Sleepy Head

Postby BadgerJelly on March 17th, 2018, 2:42 am 

I often find myself tired after my morning work and come home to sprawl on my bed prior to taking a shower and going for lunch (a couple of hours ago I did just that.)

Sometimes I just strip and shower without much thought and other times I snatch a couple of minutes reprieve and accidently slip into a strange hypnogogic state.

I am lying back on my bed with my eyes closed, yet I can see my surroundings perfectly well and then notice that I actually have my eyes closed so I must be imagining this. Even though this dawns on me I am still in a hypnogogic state and so cannot fathom how my surrounding will look different when I open my eyes (but they do because I tend not to realise the position of my body and so envision the ceiling or the wall.)

What puzzles me is how it is I know I am not asleep and know what I am "seeing" is not real, yet cannot quite let go of this fact in order not to be surprised when I open my eyes. Every time this happens I am equally surprised that my imagined view of my surroundings is different from what I actually see when I open my eyes - it is as if I have the rational understanding yet the reality still takes me by surprise even though I (semi-) consciously know when I open my eyes I will be presented with something other than what I am currently "seeing".

This is a strange state and maybe not everyone pays much attention to this? It is something akin to the flux in memory when you first awake and recall a dream with pristine clarity, only to find later in the day you cannot for the life of you remember anything about the dream other than some disembodied gist of "feeling."
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Re: Sleepy Head

Postby Katrin on March 17th, 2018, 4:29 am 

That is exactly how I feel, too.
The difference between one´s own life and imaginations and should-beings, and the outsites-lifes and real destinies
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Re: Sleepy Head

Postby Event Horizon on March 17th, 2018, 4:56 am 

Well I don't get much sleep, I get bouts of quite serious insomnia. So bad in fact, I nearly died of it after 14 consecutive nights of being awake. Nobody told me that amount of sleep deprivation is potentially lethal and I guess I was too incapacitated to care. At that time it was nigh on impossible to tell dreams from reality as they both bled into each other. It was absolutely terrible.
Dreams tend to be rather surreal as our subconscious battles in the time its got to process the recent events in your life.
Even when I was hallucinating, I could distinguish that from both dreaming and reality.
I don't know why some dreams vanish before we have time to think about them. I have had nightmares that were awfully scary, but some I still remember.
I spent another 10 1/2 months in hospital recently, and had some nightmares that were seriously bad. However, after a few hours I thought that my nightmares were worse than any film I've ever seen, and being a bit of a horror fan anyway I actually began to appreciate them like a private screening in which I also happened to be a protagonist.

Sleep science is on the up, and most don't get enough, mostly about 4-6 hours. I don't know if you've ever heard the phrase "Sleep Hygiene", but its about making sure you have no music or radio on, sleeping comfortably, and sleeping in the dark with as little light as possible. This improves sleep quality, and you wake more refreshed and rested than people with poor sleep hygiene. Just ask any nursing mother! It can rally wear you down.

I think your thread is going to attract a lot of comments, it is something common but different for all of us, and sleep scientists have been making significant inroads into understanding the issues surrounding it.

I am personally very curious as to how a dog can just lie down and go to sleep any time it likes, cats too I guess. How does that work? I wish I could do it.

You may have opened a can of worms with this one! Not even mentioned how it alters our perception of reality when having night terrors / sleep paralysis!
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Re: Sleepy Head

Postby Katrin on March 18th, 2018, 8:10 am 

Hi Event Horizon,

perhaps it can help you sleeping and dreaming if you forget your business and your worries and slip into a world of very soothing and peaceful thoughts and imaginations, where you feel comfortable in order to sleep ?

We are a conscious, thinking species in comparison to animals who always living with existence instincts, only moving when they are hungry or horny
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Re: Sleepy Head

Postby mitchellmckain on March 18th, 2018, 4:03 pm 

Imagination and dreaming are still quite a mystery to us. And there seems to be considerable variation between people. For example, I have never had the experience described in the OP, but what have experienced is memories which I know cannot be real and have concluded are actually memories of dreams which my mind/brain are treating just the same as regular memories. I strongly suspect that schizophrenia is a part of this same variation in our capacity for imagination -- so realistically experienced by some, they cannot distinguish them from reality itself.


Here is an interesting article I ran across, where they discovered that a strong predictor for schizophrenia was undeveloped genetic intellectual capacity. This may or may not connect to my own conclusion.

Something which my own experience of memories derived from dreams might be connected to is the phenomenon of planted memories which has become quite a problem in psychiatric practices.
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Re: Sleepy Head

Postby Event Horizon on March 18th, 2018, 4:33 pm 

I used to get PTSD nightmares until I came across a ketamine derivative called Methoxetamine which has since become a controlled drug, and the NHS has a moratorium on Ketamine products still I think.
It helped by reorganizing the traumatic memories as normal memories, and I rarely get them anymore. The US Army has been researching ketamine products to help soldiers with PTSD. I don't know if they have released any findings though.
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Re: Sleepy Head

Postby mitchellmckain on June 24th, 2018, 1:16 am 

I have been looking into the topic of short sleepers, because I fall into that category. I sleep 5-6 hours a night and not because of any need to do anything. In fact I will tend to stay up and only sleep when exhausted but still only sleep 5-6 hours when I get to sleep. I do wonder if more sleep would be healthier but find it difficult to do so. This is likely inherited because my mother is a more extreme case, sleeping only about 4 hours a night -- again with absolutely no reasons why she would not sleep more.

One thing the studies of short sleepers came up with was a tendency to drop off to sleep when bored, such as laying down in an MRI machine (even when told to stay awake). This was interesting because I experience something a little similar when driving. I am actually a worse driver with a good night sleep especially in a bright sun-shiny day. It is like my brain figures I am not doing anything and automatically shuts down. I am a better driver at night and when I am tired.
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