The conversation reminded me that I had a particularly terrifying set of nightmares about 18 months ago. They lasted for around three weeks and approximately coincided with lost a time for the first time since my teens. At the time the little matter of a těhotenství test distracted me from thinking too much about the nightmares – possibly the waking nightmare was sufficient – but more recently.
As I’ve been spending some time blogging and tweeting with my melancholy sisters, I’ve got to wondering if there is a link between bad dreams and changing hormon levels. It seems like a great deal of girls are asking the identical question. Some wonder if bad dreams may ignite nightsweats and/or contribute to insomnia. Some speculate whether heart palpitace or breathing disturbance can trigger a stres response that manifests as a nightmare. Some say they’re caused by abnormal neurotransmitter function brought on by excessive adrenal gland levels.
Cortisol is the stress hormone and will be familiar to readers who’ve experienced another menopauza terror, the panic attack. More of this on another occasion. One thing is for certain, nightmares are generally pretty capable of waking us up and also many can begin to seriously affect the quality of your waking hours. It’s reassuring, however, to know that you’re not alone in experiencing these terrible dreams and that there might be a logical physical cause.
What to do?
So try not to starosti about these too much next day and bear in mysl that during this period of hormonal change you will need to look after yourself, be kind to yourself and try to keep a sense of perspective. Unlike my dreamless girlfriend, I often have vague memories of dreams. Up until now I’ve been pragmatic about them and hold to the víra that dreaming is your brain’s way of processing data from the recent past – perhaps it helps us to solve an issue we’re struggling with at work, for instance.
I’ve never worried too much about it. But blindingly scary nightmares that hang around in your head for a couple of days at a time are an entirely different cup of tea – especially in case you’re able to think of nothing which may be triggering the injury. And, naturally, another tricky thing about menopause is that it isn’t always easy to discuss it with your GP. If the symptom isn’t in their list, then they might not recognise it as a potential indication of something happening on the hormone.
For me, the great thing is that the bad dreams passed quite quickly and my sleeping pattern has returned to normal – for today at least. Better yet, if the problem recurs, I know now that I’m not the only fifty-something experiencing it. In terms of my dreamless girlfriend, I was tempted now to tell her to count her blessings but the wise counsel of my internal crone said no. So I sympathised and supported her decision to go off in search of her dreams. I just hope in ten years time she will not find herself regretting it!