What is a lucid dream like?

Consider what one of your normal dreams is like-with strange plots and non-narrative structure. Now, put yourself back into the dream, but imagine its many details.

You are flying through the air, but you can see the clouds and the ground below, you can feel the wind whooshing against your skin and you can smell the clean air. In the dream, you think, "I am dreaming that I am flying."

Lucid dreaming happens during REM sleep, which is the fifth stage of sleep. At this stage, the body is essentially paralyzed, except for the eyelids.

In an experiment involving lucid dreaming, subjects used prearranged eyelid movements, during REM sleep, to signal that they were dreaming.

So far, the only way scientists have been able to study lucid sleepers by using tiny movements from a test subject paired with an EEG to confirm the sleep stage.

Lucid dreaming is like waking up inside a cartoon or movie: anything is possible. The situations are very lifelike. People report that they can interact with others (but that those other people do not know that they are in a dream) and can do things that they normally could not do. For example, they may be stronger than they usually are, or can fly, or can kiss someone that they never would.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.