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Isr J Psychiatry Relat Sci. 1995;32(2):140-5.

The nightmare of returning home: a case of acute onset nightmare disorder treated by lucid dreaming.

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Dept. of Behavioral Sciences, Sackler Faculty of Medicine, Tel Aviv University, Ramat Aviv, Israel.


Nightmare disorder with acute onset involves the sudden appearance of frightening and disruptive dreams. In severe cases it may involve high levels of anxiety, fear of falling asleep, cognitive deficits secondary to sleep deprivation and so may pose a psychiatric emergency. Standard techniques of dream interpretation appear limited in dealing with such a crisis. Lucid dreaming, the experience of dreaming and simultaneously being aware that one is dreaming is an easily learned technique that may provide effective and dramatic relief. The usefulness of lucid dreaming is illustrated by a case history.

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