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Blind Dreams

Many people have believed for years that blind people do not experience dreams. Turns out, they really do. Of course, unlike those with sight the dreams differ extremely.  An article I stumbled upon talked about the variation of dreams and how they differed among blind people. According to a study conducted at the University of Hartford in 1999, it was finally deduced that blind people may in fact dream. They analyzed a group of 15 blind individuals and around 400 dreams. This study provided results which concluded that those who went blind from age five or younger, did not see images in their sleep. This was different for those aged seven and older who did experience visual dreams during their time of rest. It turns out though, that the longer a person goes through blindness, the more rare this visual dreams become. What astonished me the most however was the other senses involved in a blind person’s dream. While regular sighted people usually have only audio during their dreamtime, blind people experience the use of other senses such as touch, taste, and smell.

This article was extremely informative and has answered my long thought about question. Have you guys found this to be as astonishing as I have? Or was this already common knowledge to many of you?

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Categories: Uncategorized
  1. April 17, 2012 at 5:11 pm

    This is really cool! I think it makes sense that blind people dream with other senses, because their other senses have to grow really strong to compensate for them being unable to see. Another interesting thing to think about is what blind people see when they dream, and what they dream about. An article I read on the Huff Post (the same one this post is based off of), states that, in a study done at the University of Hartford, 60-61% of participants, both male and female, had dreams related to transportation/traveling, because that is a daily struggle for those who are blind – getting around safely. It is really interesting to consider not only how blind people ‘see’, but how anyone with a certain disability compensates for that disability by strengthening something else.

  2. April 18, 2012 at 2:17 am

    This is so interesting! I have always wondered what blind people saw when they dreamed, but I never knew! I assumed they saw colors or blurry outlines or whatever their memory communicated to them, but I had no idea that other senses were involved. I think that is so interesting that they experience their other senses such as touch, taste, and smell in their dreams! I never normally notice any other senses in my dreams but vision. It is also interesting to think about what they dream about – if they dream about voices or if they put faces to people’s voices or if they even dream at all. I wonder how blind people envision people if they were blind from birth or what they picture certain settings, like their home or a dorm room, to be like. I can’t imagine ever loosing my ability to see, but I find it fascinating that people who have lost their vision compensate their lack of sight with other heightened senses, such as touch or hearing.

  3. April 18, 2012 at 5:08 am

    I never thought about this before, but it is SO intriguing!! Honestly, this is probably the most interesting concept I have heard in a while! So many thoughts are just rushing into my mind! First of all, it must be so exciting for a blind person to have visual dreams. If they could have them, I wonder if they would want to sleep all of the time! Secondly, I wonder what could really constitute a dream if there was only audio. I suppose I can’t really understand this because I am not blind, and for a blind person an audio-only dream is probably just similar to reality. But it is just such an interesting concept that someone who cannot see can close their eyes and visual while in a dream state.
    Then, I think a little deeper into the concept. We dream about things relevant to what has occurred doing the day and that is where our images come from. So, if a blind person did see images, where would they be coming from?
    All in all, this concept really just blows my mind…

  4. April 18, 2012 at 3:05 pm

    I thought this was so interesting. I feel like this is probably the most interesting concept I have heard about in awhile. And it’s so amazing that now people are starting to research more and realize more on what blind people really see. They just can’t see when they open their eyes, but its so amazing that when they close their eyes and sleep they can see visual images. I really want to know the answer to uwblogger2’s question because I literally had the exact same question when I read this post.

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