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    Thread: REM Question

    1. #1
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      REM Question

      So I always thought that REM was a lighter stage of sleep, but lately I have been reading that we dream in the deepest part of sleep. And there are not many sources on the subject. In the sleep cycle, REM is usually stage 5 (until stages 3 and 4 got grouped together and REM became stage 4). If you look at a typical sleep cycle graph, the order is:

      Awake
      REM
      Light
      Deep

      graph.jpg

      So just to clear up some confusion, is REM the deepest or the lightest stage of sleep? I always thought it was the lightest because we usually awaken naturally straight out of REM and feel refreshed if we are lucky enough to (We usually feel groggy if we wake up during delta wave sleep). Sources if possible please

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      REM is the lightest stage of sleep. REM is often times called stage 5 because there's already stage 1, 2, 3, and 4, so next up would be 5. If you go by this logic, it's easy to see how REM can be thought to be the heaviest stage (since as the stages increase in number they get deeper), but be assured that REM is the lightest stage (or at least one of the lightest). Studies have shown that we do dream during deep sleep/slow-wave sleep (stages 1/2) but they are often hard to remember and not vivid at all which makes it seem like we don't actually dream during this time.

      Source: My undergrad biopsychology/neuroscience professor/lectures. I can link you them if you're interested.
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      Thanks a lot Burke for clearing this up for me!

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