It’s fun to kick back sometimes and take a mental break, daydreaming about pleasurable things, like trips we want to take, or recalling a sweet memory from our childhood. But night dreaming is a whole different animal. That is when our untamed, unconscious mind takes control. Sometimes our dreams are as frivolous as kittens, full of silly fun, and other times they are like two-headed monsters stirring up our innermost fears and doubts.
We may not be able to completely control our dreaming state while we sleep, but there are things we can do to have better, sweeter dreams at night, according to sleep researcher Rosie Osmun on the Amerisleep.com website. There are some tried-and-true hacks you can do to improve your dreaming ability and the quality of your dreams.
Sleep on your right side. When people sleep on their left side, they tend to have more nightmares.
Enjoy a light snack before going to bed, like a banana or a few crackers and cheese. (If you have a cheese snack, make it cheddar or red Leicester cheese. They are recommended by the British Cheese Board for pleasant sleep. Blue or stilton cheese has the opposite effect.)
Take vitamin B6 every day in order to have more lucid dreams, or dreams in which you are aware that you’re dreaming. Lucid dreams are known to help with anxiety, nightmares, dispelling phobias, and boosting creativity.
Surround yourself with pleasant aromas and soothing sounds. Lavender or lilac sachets or essential oils help induce pleasant sleep. The scent of roses is also known to induce positive dreams. The real or recorded sounds of rain or ocean waves playing softly in the background can lull you into a deep and restful sleep, full of sweet dreams.
A comfortable mattress and pillow and a cool bedroom temperature are also recommended.