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Dream Theory and Science: A Review

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Dreams are a fundamental part of our lives that have fascinated and mystified people for centuries and yet there has been little consensus on their origin and function. There are some theories that emphasize the autonomous role of deeper brain structures and see dreaming as an epiphenomenon of rapid-eye movement (REM) sleep without a meaning to decipher. Other theories indicate a role in emotional processing, memory consolidation, or evolutionary roles in preparing people to face threats when awake. Most studies have focused on exploring dreams and their neural correlates in adults, and therefore people still have a limited understanding of dreaming in children. In this review, I discuss some of the past and current findings and theories about the phenomenology, neural underpinnings, and function of dreaming in general with an emphasis on findings in children.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: April 2, 2016

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