Here’s Why Your Dreams May Be Violent, According To Experts

Admit it, you have fallen asleep watching your favorite binge worthy show. We all have. Unfortunately for your dream self, that show doesn’t always check itself at the door just because you catch a little shut eye. According to a new study in Dreaming, what you watch before you conk out at night really can make its way into your brain after you’ve fallen asleep.

Researchers surveyed 1,287 Turkish people between the ages of 10 and 60. Participants were asked what they had watched before they went to bed and what they had dreamt about. They were also asked about what kinds of media they they typically enjoy before bed and about what sort of dreams they may typically have.

According to the study, the more people were exposed to TV, movies, video games, the internet, and music, the more they tended to remember having dreamt in general. Researchers also noted that whatever that the participants choice of entertainment also affected what those dreams were actually about.


That means that more sexual the TV, movies, video games, etc were, the more sexual their dreams were. Same was true for violence. The more violent subject matter, the more violent dreams participants reported. Plus, time matters. Participants who reported watched something violent 90 or less minutes before going to sleep were 13 times as likely to experience violent dreams that night. Those who viewed or watched sexual content were 6 times more likely to have a sexual dream. Sorry Mom and Dad, looks like you were right, watching those slasher films right before bed aren’t the best life choice.

Now before you break out the textbook and start reading to yourself before you go to bed to cram, you should know that while dreams and what you watch or listen to might be linked, they aren’t necessarily the cause.  Brad Bushman, Professor of Communication and Psychology at The Ohio State University, said, “It is at least possible that people who have more violent or more sexual dreams are more likely to seek out that content during the day. Another possibility is that causality may go both ways, or that some other factor is related to both media consumption and dream content. But I do believe that the most plausible explanation is that the media we consume influences our dreams.”


Now what? According to Professor Bushman, it might be a good idea to, “avoid media with violent and sexual content, especially right before bed.” Sorry Westworld, but we need to keep those killer androids out of our dreams.