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Sleep and Dreaming – Why do you need to sleep and dream? Key terminology
REM sleep Part of the sleep cycle with rapid eye movement (REM) caused by eyes moving a lot
behind the eyelids when dreaming occurs.
Sleep cycle A nightly pattern of deep sleep, light sleep and dreaming.
NREM sleep Non-rapid eye moment sleep (rapid eye movements do not occur).
In REM sleep, all incoming sensory information is blocked.
Neuron A nerve cell that transmits information.
In REM sleep, when movement is prevented.
Not having enough sleep; this can affect physical functioning such as weight and brain
Human body rhythms that have a daily (24 hour) cycle, such as the sleep-wake cycle.
A circadian/daily rhythm, generally triggered by the day-night cycle.
Rhythms that occur in a period of less than 24 hours, such as the sleep cycle.
Endogenous Internal pacemakers; our biological clock.
Hormones Chemical messengers taking messages through the bloodstream.
Melatonin A hormone invoked in setting circadian rhythms, including the sleep-wake cycle and blood
Pineal gland A small endocrine glad that produces melatonin. An endocrine glade produces a hormone
that is secreted into the bloodstream.
Exogenous External cues in the environment that affect our biological clock.
Zeitgebers External cues that synchronise our biological rhythms; for example, to a 24-hour clock.
Entrainment When biological rhythms are matched to their environmental triggers, such as circadian
rhythms being set in response to external (light) cues.
Insomnia Problems with sleeping at night that cause difficulties during the day.
Narcolepsy Inability to control sleeping and waking, so experiencing involuntary daytime sleeping.
Hallucinations Seeing, hearing, smelling, tasting or feeling something that is not there, such as seeing
Cataplexy A loss of muscle power and tone, triggered by an onset of strong emotions such as
Unconscious An inaccessible part of the mind that affects behaviour and feelings.
Id The part of Freud’s personality theory that is demanding, thought of as ‘I want’…
Superego The part of Freud’s personality theory that is the conscience, thought of as ‘you can’t
Ego The part of Freud’s personality theory that is reasoning, to balance demands of the id and
The story the dreamer tells of what happens in a dream.
The deeper meaning behind what is said about the dream.
Dreamwork The transformation of unconscious thoughts into dream content.
Freud’s (1905) theory of child development (the oral, anal, phallic, latent and genital
Phallic stage The third of Freud’s stages during which the Oedipus complex is worked through.
Part of Freud’s phallic stage; a boy has unconscious feelings for his mother and hates his
father, who he sees as a rival and fears will castrate him.