One research revealed that galantamine, used to improve the symptoms of Alzheimer's disease, can induce those who consume lucid dreams.
It is estimated that only half the population has experienced lucid dreams – and remembered -.
Researchers from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and the Institute for Lucidity in Hawaii found a way to induce lucid dreamsthat is, dreams in which the sleeping person knows that he is dreaming and can therefore determine what happens in them.
According to the study published in the specialized journal PLOS One, the medicine galantamine, Used to reduce the symptoms of the early stages of Alzheimer's disease, it contains the chemicals needed to induce this mental state.
The researchers came to this conclusion after a series of studies to understand how the brain can reach a state of lucid sleep, a state that only half the population has experienced, according to figures released in the new work.
According to these previous studies, the lucid dream has to do with the regulation of neurotransmitter acetylcholine, a molecule that occurs in neurons and is necessary for the transmission of nerve impulses in the central and peripheral nervous system.
This molecule is also responsible for modulating the deepest phase of the dream – dream REM -. When this neurotransmitter reaches its highest peak, an enzyme is called acetylcholinesterase, inhibits its effects and keep the person unconscious and asleep.
According to this logic, the scientists concluded that compounds that are able to inhibit the effects of the enzyme would retain high levels of acetylcone, of which the "excess" it would be connected to the appearance of lucid dreams.
These compounds appeared in the above medication. By partly deactivating acetylcholinesterase, we increase the possibilities of those who consume it to have lucid dreams.
To test this hypothesis, both research groups enlisted 121 volunteers who identified themselves as "lucid dream lovers" and who participated in therapies to induce this state.
For three nights participants attended their therapy with doses of Alzheimer's medication: first with a placebo (they did not know), then with 4 mg and finally with 8 mg.
The results showed that the medication is effective. On the first day, only 14% of the participants reported lucid dreams. The second, the number rose to 27%, and the third, 42% of them indicated having had this experience.
The scientists explained that these were controlled tests in the laboratory, where patients had to wake up every 4.5 hours and were monitored during the wake. That is why they advise the public to stay away from the medication, because there are still no possible side effects of the method.
And what are lucid dreams for?
While many people try to reach the mental sleeping state that is being worn for purely recreational purposes – it is like building a fantasy world where all wishes are fulfilled – there are psychologists who believe that it can be an effective way to deal with certain trauma. ; s from the past to go.
Moreover, it is a condition in which neuroscientists around the world are interested because it is the most complex mechanisms of the human consciousness