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I am wondering if Alzheimer's will eventually effect the dreaming mind or do dreams continue? In my family, we always talk about our dreams and enjoy analyzing them. It's one of our little things.
Do dreams continue even though the ability to remember them fades? I wonder if there have been any studies about this and if that might help to understand the way disease works. I hope my question doesn't come across as silly, that's not how I intend it to be. Thank you.

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My husband BEGAN to remember dreaming only after his dementia had begun.
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Good question - not silly at all. Most dreaming occurrs during REM (rapid eye movement) SLEEP. That is also the time of most vivid dreams and dreams more easily recalled. All mammals, including birds, experience REM sleep.

My Dad first then Mom had two different forms of dementia, 15 years apart. He used to take naps in his recliner in the den during the daytime. it was fairly easy to see that he was experiencing REM sleep but I never asked him about it when he woke up. My mom, OTOH, would need comforting often to get to sleep so there were many times I sat with her, daytime or lights on at night, as she slept. She too experienced visable REM sleep.

In the middle stages of her dementia when she would wake and I would ask her if she remembers what she was dreaming about, she would generally say, Oh, I don't think I was dreaming. I never pushed too hard at this and often didn't even ask because it would sometimes provoke a perturbed, What makes you think I was dreaming?

In the last 3 months before her passing, when she was experiencing heart problems as well as the dementia, she would often call out in her sleep (sometimes screaming), and when I dashed in, she was still asleep. When I set by her side as she slept during this phase of the disease, and she would awake afterward telling me she had seen and talked to several people who had already passed on. I believe you can read other stories of folks who had that experience as a person gets closer to crossing over.

I would say that a person with dementia continues dreaming but that recollection is faulty or absent. The numerous reports of folks believing they have spoken to the departed in their dreams, especially when they are themselves near death, contribute heavily to the belief that there is some type of great beyond.
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