How common are recurrent dreams?

60% to 75% of adults report having had one or more recurrent dreams at some point in their lives.  In some cases, recurrent dreams which emerge during childhood may persist into adulthood. There is also some evidence to indicate that recurrent dreams are more prevalent in women than they are in men.

In terms of dream content, 60% to 85% of recurrent dreams are described as being unpleasant.  Dream content is described as being pleasant in approximately 10% of recurrent dreams, while the rest are rated as being either neutral or containing a mixture of both positive and negative emotions. .  Because positive recurrent dreams occur infrequently, their association to measures of well-being has not been investigated.  Thus, we do not know if people who report positive recurrent dreams also show a relative deficit on measures of well-being.  Similarly, we do not know whether the maintained cessation of pleasant recurrent dreams is correlated with positive, negative, or no changes in well-being.

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