Normal to quickly dream again?

When I wake up in the morning, then drift back to sleep, I often go immediately into dreaming again – instantly. Is that normal? I thought it took some time to get from a waking state to the stage of sleep in which you dream.

Note that I’m talking about being completely awake – talking to the wife, going to the bathroom, fiddling with the clock – then lying down and closing my eyes for a few more minutes of snooze time. When I close my eyes and drift off, I’m instantly dreaming again. I can tell how quick it is because sometimes I’ll look at the clock, close my eyes, then when I open again the clock hasn’t changed even one minute. Yet I was dreaming.

I know that when the body is deprived of REM sleep, one can cascade much faster through sleep stages to get to it. I don’t know if there’s an alternate explanation. Are you sleep-deprived in general?

I frequently do that. some mornings, several times in a row.

No, I’m not sleep deprived and generally sleep well. In fact, I’d say this occurs more often when I awake after a nice, restful sleep and leisurely waking, like on a Sunday morning. Of course, that’s when I have the luxury of lying there and dozing off again.

I do the same thing. I love that feeling of closing my eyes for five minutes but thinking I had gotten another hour of sleep in.

Glad you started this thread! :slight_smile: This happens to me, plenty, and I’d wondered the same thing: how was I “dropping” back into REM so damn fast?

Brains, like cats, are teh weirdness.

This happened to me just yesterday morning. I woke up at 6:30 AM, said to myself bullshit, took a leak, and went right back to sleep (for about an hour) - continuing the same dream. Felt much more rested when I woke up…

It’s just weird how fast it can happen. I close my eyes, the dream starts. The dog barks and I wake up. My wife is talking about what to have for breakfast. I close my eyes and dream again. I open my eyes and clearly* it’s been only a few seconds because my wife is just finishing the sentence she started when I was awake!* :eek:

Maybe it’s not so unusual, but I sure thought getting to the dream state was a longer process.

I can run to the bathroom and jump back in bed to be dreaming within two minutes. such dreams have continuity. In other words, I pick up the dream where I left off.

Happens to me as well. I’ve been interested in dreams all my life and from my experience I don’t believe that you only dream during REM sleep; and while writing this I checked the wiki page on REM and it says “Vividly recalled dreams *mostly *occur during REM sleep.” (Emphasis mine.) It might even be that you dream all the time – heck, even if your awake, but then it is drowned by your conscious mind (speculating) – and the REM-dream notion is rather exaggerated in the general understanding. Last year I had a dream while taking a nap and the dream continued vividly during short periods of being awake; drifting out and in of the dream and out and in of sleeping state, while the dream never really was paused. I knew I was dreaming in the dream, by the way. I’m just mentioning this as an example (though unusual) of how dreams might work outside of REM periods. My sleep and dreaming is “normal” otherwise, I just happen to dream a lot (or rather, remember them quite easily).

It happens to me all the time, too. I don’t think you have to worry unless that happens to you even when you initially go to sleep.

And, yes, there really is a theory that you are always dreaming, but unaware of it while conscious.

It happens to me too. The previous dream can even resume, sometimes including things I tought about the dream while I was awake and that I still remember (like : “how comes I’m still in high school at 46”? or “In fact I think we aren’t married. Actually, I don’t think I was ever married”. In a recent interesting dream “By the way, why exactly did you murder this guy? And when I think of it, murder isn’t a nice thing to do, you know”. The dream however generally take over my waking doubts “well, yes, you’re a really attractive boy…hmmm…let’s forget about this murder detail and keep bicycling in a car along this nice countryside road surrounded by haunted ruins”)

Why would you have to worry then? I freqently fall asleep for a few minutes before my wife follows me to bed, and I have already started dreaming.

Oddly enough, NOVA had a show on this sort of thing last week. The long and short of it is there are different kinds of dreams, and not all dreams occur during REM sleep.

Another vote for happens to me all the time.

Because, if you are actually going into REM sleep, that can be a sign of narcolepsy. My dad went into REM 10 minutes after he fell asleep at the sleep lab, and that was the biggest indicator that something was wrong.

I can drop off immediately into dreaming sleep and wake back up within a minute or two. What’s interesting is the time compression (or dilation) - the dream can seem to last much longer than the time I’m actually asleep.

Which, according to the NOVA episode, means you’re experiencing non-REM dreaming. Dreams in REM sleep appear to occur at real-time.