Today, I want to talk to you about what happens when anxiety gives you nightmares and, more to the point, how you can prevent anxiety at night and stop nightmares from happening.
Watch the video or continue reading below…
can beAnxiety disorders cause nightmares, and nightmares are different to nocturnal panic attacks.
Nocturnal panic attacks are when you wake up and you’re actually sort of acting out a panic attack and most of the time, you’re aware that you’re in your bedroom, you feel like you’re not quite awake, not quite asleep but there’s a definite feeling of panic.
Anxiety and panic attacks at night can begin while you are asleep, and will most often wake you up with a feeling of intense fear and bewilderment.
A nightmare is when you’re definitely asleep and your subconscious mind is presenting you with images that are frightening in nature and sometimes, this can be your anxiety manifesting in a direct or indirect way.
Other times, it can be your anxiety manifesting in a more underlying way. So, don’t expect that your anxieties in real life will automatically reflect what’s in your dreams.
As you know, dreams are often very symbolic and don’t make a lot of sense at all when you wake up. But they are your brain’s way of being able to process that you’ve been through in your waking hours and kind of help you to try and bring things to a conclusion in your mind.
So that is the purpose of your dreams and sometimes, when you have anxiety, your dreams can come into play because it’s just the way that your brain tries to cope but it’s not necessary for you to have anxiety nightmares. There are definitely ways that you can prevent them from happening and I’ve got three tips that you can use to help prevent nightmares and nightmares cause by anxiety when you’re trying to sleep.
Step 1: Stop eating 2 hours before bed
Anxiety disorders cause nightmare and food just makes it worse. The reason for this is two-fold:
Number one, sometimes, when you eat things before bed, they can contain ingredients that can cause your brain to go into overdrive.
So, an excess of sugar, if you eat chocolate before bed, sometimes, even things like bananas or peanut butter can contain compounds that cause some people to have whacky dreams.
I personally find that if I eat cheese before bed, I don’t get a very good night’s sleep and a lot of weird dreams kind of come up and pester me as I’m trying to sleep.
Number two, if you eat and then you don’t give yourself enough time to digest the food properly and then you lie down flat, you get acid reflux.
It’s a little bit of vomit that comes up into your throat and goes back down again. And while this isn’t dangerous in and of itself, you can feel that sensation in your sleep – so that can cause strange nightmares like that you’re being choked or that you can’t breathe or that you’re suffocating.
So, obviously, you want to avoid anything that’s going to cause a bodily sensation or reaction that could be represented in your dreams as something that’s far more scary and dramatic.
Step 2: Drink chamomile tea
I recommend having some chamomile tea before bed. So, not within that two-hour window but maybe a little bit earlier.
Chamomile tea is a great herb for you to take to just relax your mind and your body and your spirit, get you in the mood for winding down at the end of the day.
Chamomile really helps when anxiety disorders cause nightmares – it is a natural, soothing, easy-drinking remedy.
I find chamomile tea is super, super effective in winding me down and relaxing me and just giving me that space that I need when I’m getting ready to go asleep at the end of the day.
Step 3: Take Rescue Remedy
This is one of my particular favorites. I use a Bach flower essence called rescue remedy and it’s available from the chemist, it’s in a little yellow bottle and you can get it in a spray, you can get it in drops and you can get it in pastilles like lollies that you can suck.
Rescue remedy helps when anxiety disorders cause nightmares, because of the energetic frequency of the remedy.
Bach flower essences are an energetic tincture that’s taken from trees and flowers that exhibit the similar symptoms of anxiety. So it actually uses the ‘Law of Similars’ which means that like cancels out like.
So, if you are feeling anxious, you have some of the recue remedy which contains the energy from the flowers and trees that exhibit anxiety symptoms and by doing that, you’re getting on an energetic level and that your anxiety and the anxiety in the rescue remedy cancel each other out.
I take a spray of Rescue Remedy on my tongue as I’m getting out of the shower in the evening and then another spray as I’m getting into bed and then I don’t go off to sleep straight away, I usually read, but I do find that if I have the two sprays of rescue remedy, within about 5 to 20 minutes, my mind is settling down and I’m getting more than ready to sleep properly, soundly and fully as well.
And I get nowhere near the amount of nightmares that I used to.
All I can say is it works.
Like many, many things in life, I don’t understand why it works but it just works. And I find that if three of these tips, used all together, just amplify the effectiveness.
So, if you don’t eat or drink anything for two hours before bed and before that, have a cup of chamomile tea to really settle yourself down and relax yourself for the evening and if you take recuse remedy. So that’s what I recommend for you.
Two things you should do are:
Go and download my grounding meditation. This will help when anxiety disorders cause nightmares. If you listen to it before bed, it will bring your energy into your body and help you to connect it with the core of the earth and that really helps to anchor you, anchor your energy and you will just feel more together and more focused and more able to sleep. Your energy will feel stiller.
The other meditation I want you to download is my white light protection meditation – so this involves putting yourself in a bubble of white light but it just really protects your energy so it’s great for you to listen to just as you’re going off to sleep because it helps to protect your energy when anxiety disorders cause nightmares as well.
And of course, you could also book a Reiki session with me too!
I hope, after reading this, you have a lovely sweet sleep. Do put those tips into practice.
Love + light,