What do you see when you dream? Are there any commonalities between your dreams or are they all over the place? Do blind people dream? If so, what do their dreams look like? These are all interesting questions. While the answers to these questions may seem straight-forward and simple, the truth is that they go much deeper than most people realize.
There are a number of different responses to this question. Some feel that blind people definitely don’t dream because one of the primary components of a dream is visual imagery. In other words, dreaming involves sight and seeing things in your mind that aren’t really present in real life.
Others believe that blind people can indeed have dreams but they are simply not as vivid or detailed as those who can see normally. And then, there is another group who believes that those who have been blinded can have just as vivid and complex dreams as anyone else. Read on to find out more about this question and its answers…
Do Blind People Dream? The Truth Behind This Interesting Question
The visual world is an overwhelming place. There are so many sights, sounds, textures and smells that it’s impossible for us to take them all in at once. And because our brains store so much of this information for later retrieval, we have the ability to recall memories from days gone by as well as anticipate potential future events based on our current surroundings.
When you think about it, your brain must be a very busy place. It is constantly taking in information from your senses and storing it for future use.
Its workload doesn’t stop there though; the brain has to be able to stimulate these memories at will so that you can recall them again when necessary. Because of this, it’s fair to ask if people who are blind dream in the same way that those with sight can see the world around them when they sleep. Here is what we know…
What is a Dream?
A dream is any series of images, thoughts and feelings that occur when we are sleeping. Dreaming is a highly individualized experience that is not fully understood. The science of dreaming is called oneirology and is studied by psychologists who specialize in the study of dreaming. The term dreaming is derived from the Old English drem, which means the “meandering of the mind.” According to scientists, the purpose of dreaming is unknown.
However, a lot of research shows that dreams are related to our everyday lives, past experiences and emotions. Dreams are normally initiated right after we fall asleep and usually last for 5-30 minutes. After this, a process called “dream termination” occurs, where our brains “shut down” the dream and we enter into a state called rapid eye movement (REM) sleep. During this phase, we experience full body paralysis, rapid eye movements and a rise in body temperature.
Can Blind People Dream?
Blind people can have dreams and experience visual imagery. Most of the time, these dreams are influenced by the person’s other senses, like touch, hearing and even smell. For example, if you are blind and you dream about being in a forest, it’s very likely that you’re using your ears to hear the sounds of the birds chirping and the rustling of the leaves on the trees. Similarly, you might be using your sense of smell to smell the freshness of the forest.
Other times, blind people’s dreams could be heavily influenced by the people they are dreaming with. For example, let’s say you’re in a relationship with someone who has sight. You might be dreaming about the things that they are seeing in their daily life and you’ll have no idea that these things aren’t sensory based.
It is important to remember that although blind people can have visual dreams, they are most likely to be influenced by other senses. This is because the visual part of the brain is damaged and therefore unable to process visual information. Visual dreams are very rare for blind people.
Why Don’t Blind People See in their Dreams?
As mentioned above, when we have dreams our brains are working very hard to process visual information. The visual cortex is responsible for this, and it is the part of the brain that is activated when we are awake and when we are sleeping.
When we are dreaming, the visual cortex activates, and the visual information that is being processed is sent to the visual areas in the back of the brain. Blind people, however, have damage to the visual parts of their brains, which means that their visual cortex is non-functional when they are sleeping.
This means that although blind people can dream, they can’t see in their dreams because the visual areas in their brains can’t process the visual information. Instead, they use other senses like touch and hearing to create their own visual imagery.
The Science Behind Dreaming
It is widely believed that the purpose of dreaming is to help the brain process and store the information it has gathered during the day. While you’re awake, your brain is constantly taking in information from your five senses — sight, smell, hearing, taste, and touch. It also monitors your thoughts, emotions, and memories. This information is stored in your brain’s neurons. The electrical activity of these neurons can be measured using an electroencephalogram (EEG).
The frequency and level of this activity can vary depending on the type of information being stored. When you are asleep, however, the electrical activity of your neurons drops to its lowest level. This makes sense when you consider that your body is resting when you’re asleep. What doesn’t make sense, however, is that your brain is busier when you’re asleep than when you’re awake. This is because when you’re asleep, your brain is not only taking in information but also actively processing it.
The visual world is an overwhelming place. There are so many sights, sounds, textures and smells that it’t impossible for us to take them all in at once. And because our brains store so much of this information for later retrieval, we have the ability to recall memories from days gone by as well as anticipate potential future events based on our current surroundings.
When you think about it, your brain must be a very busy place. It is constantly taking in information from your senses and storing it for future use. Its workload doesn’t stop there though; the brain has to be able to stimulate these memories at will so that you can recall them again when necessary. Because of this, it’s fair to ask if people who are blind dream in the same way that those with sight can see the world around them when they sleep.