Dreaming in Adolescents During the COVID-19 Health Crisis: Survey Among a Sample of European School Students

Frontiers in Psychology 12 (2021)
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According to the continuity hypothesis of dreaming and contemporary psychodynamic approaches, dreams reflect waking life. The aim of the present study was to explore the relationship between the COVID-19 pandemic and dreaming in adolescents. A cross-sectional survey was conducted in Italy, Romania and Croatia involving 2,105 secondary school students. No substantial differences between countries were found. Thirty-one percent of the participants reported heightened dream recall, 18% noticed an increase in nightmares during the lockdown, and 15% of the provided dreams included pandemic-related content. The results indicate that subjective emotional reactions to lockdown had a significantly higher correlation to dreaming than objective distress. These findings suggest that attention to dreams should be included in preventive programs for adolescents with pandemic-related stress.



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