How to Stop Having Nightmares: 9 Tools for Stopping Nightmares and Bad Dreams
You can learn to stop having nightmares.
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Nightmares feel so intense and powerful. They can make it really hard for people to sleep well. Like me, most people have nightmares occasionally. These are called idiopathic nightmares.
However, 9 out of 10 people with PTSD have recurrent distressing nightmares that interfere with their ability to function. And sleep avoidance and sleep deprivation can lead to more intense nightmares. This is the awful cycle of PTSD: the more you try to escape it, the worse it gets. But there is a way out. And some researchers have found that treating nightmares helps accelerate the other aspects of the PTSD healing process.
In this video you will learn one reason why nightmares could be a good thing and nine ways you can treat nightmares, process through them, and get them to stop. One of those skills is called the imagery rehearsal technique, an evidence-based treatment for nightmares that you can do at home.
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Therapy in a Nutshell, LLC, and the information provided by Emma McAdam are solely intended for informational and entertainment purposes and are not a substitute for advice, diagnosis, or treatment regarding medical or mental health conditions. Although Emma McAdam is a licensed marriage and family therapist, the views expressed on this site or any related content should not be taken for medical or psychiatric advice. Always consult your physician before making any decisions related to your physical or mental health.
In therapy I use a combination of Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, Systems Theory, positive psychology, and a bio-psycho-social approach to treating mental illness and other challenges we all face in life. The ideas from my videos are frequently adapted from multiple sources. Many of them come from Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, especially the work of Steven Hayes, Jason Luoma, and Russ Harris. The sections on stress and the mind-body connection derive from the work of Stephen Porges (the Polyvagal theory), Peter Levine (Somatic Experiencing) Francine Shapiro (EMDR), and Bessel Van Der Kolk. I also rely heavily on the work of the Arbinger institute for my overall understanding of our ability to choose our life’s direction.
And deeper than all of that, the Gospel of Jesus Christ orients my personal worldview and sense of security, peace, hope, and love https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/comeuntochrist/believe
If you are in crisis, please contact the National Suicide Prevention Hotline at https://suicidepreventionlifeline.org/ or 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or your local emergency services.
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