Scientists from the Neuromathematics Research, Innovation and Dissemination Center (NeuroMat) have found that the pandemic affects the behavior of people not only in their waking state. It also leads to frightening and disturbing dreams.
During the study, scientists analyzed 239 dream records of 67 people made in March and April 2020. People’s dreams during a pandemic reflect the burden of mental anguish, fear of infection, stress associated with the need to maintain social distance and lack of physical contact with other people.
Dream reports abound in terms that can be attributed to anger and sadness, as well as feelings of cleanliness and pollution. According to the researchers, the associations of dreams with cleanliness indicate new social strategies — the use of masks, social distance, the use of sanitizers, etc.
The results of the observations are consistent with the hypothesis that dreams reflect problems experienced during wakefulness. And the predominance of negative emotions, such as sadness, anger, indicates an increased emotional load that people do not have time to process.