ISSN: 2547-9431
Periodical Publication of University of Health Sciences Bagcilar Training and Research Hospital
Individuals with eating disorder symptoms have an increased risk of nightmares
William E. Kelly, Qiujun Yu
Bagcilar Medical Bulletin 2018;3(4):49-54
Objective: This preliminary study was aimed to examine if individuals with eating disorder symptoms have a higher incidence of nightmares. Additionally, the possible influence of general psychological distress on the relationship between eating disorder symptoms and nightmares was examined.

Methods: Using a cross-sectional design, 350 university students completed measurements of nightmare frequency, eating disorder symptoms, and psychological distress.

Results: Individuals reporting symptoms of eating disorders were significantly more likely to report frequent nightmares compared to controls. However, when controlling for gender and general psychological distress, eating disorder symptomatology no longer significantly predicted nightmares.

Conclusion: Individuals reporting symptoms of eating disorders are more likely to report nightmares. However, the incidence of nightmares among individuals with eating disorder symptoms appears to be largely affected by gender and levels of general distress. Further research is suggested to extend and replicate these preliminary results among clinical samples. Physicians with patients reporting eating disorder symptoms should consider screening for the presence of nightmares.

Keywords: Nightmares, eating disorders, psychological distress

1.American Psychiatric Association. Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders. 5th ed. Washington, DC: Author; 2013.

2.Nielsen TA, Zadra A. Dreaming disorders in principles and practices in sleep medicine. In: Kryger MH, Roth T, Dement WC, eds. Principles and Practices of Sleep Medicine. 3rd ed. Philadelphia, Pa: WB Saunders; 2000:753-771.

3.Krakow B. Nightmare complaints in treatment-seeking patients in clinical sleep medicine settings: Diagnostic and treatment implications. Sleep 2006;29:1313-1319.

4.Köthe M, Pietrowsky R. Behavioral effects of nightmares and their correlations to personality patterns. Dreaming 2001;11:43-52.

5.Nadorff MR, Nadorff DK, Germain A. Nightmares: under-reported, undetected, and therefore untreated. J Clin Sleep Med 2015;11:747-750.

6.Aurora RN, Zak RS, Auerbach SH, Casey KR, Chowduri S, Krippot A, Maganti RK, Ramar K, Kristo DA, Bista SR, Lamm CI, Morgenthaler TI. Best practice guide for the treatment of nightmare disorder in adults. J Clin Sleep Med 2010;6:389-401.

7.Krakow B, Hollifield M, Johnston L, Koss M, Schrader R, Warner TD, Tandberg D, Lauriello J, McBride L, Cutchen L, Cheng D, Emmons S, Germain A, Melendrez D, Sandoval D, Prince H. Imagery rehearsal therapy for chronic nightmares in sexual assault survivors with posttraumatic stress disorder. JAMA 2001;286:537-545.

8.Nadorff MR, Nazem S, Fiske A. Insomnia symptoms, nightmares, and suicidal ideation in a college student sample. Sleep 2011;34:93-98.

9.Watson D. Dissociations of the night: Individual differences in sleep-related experiences and their relation to dissociation and schizotypy. J Abnorm Psychol 2001;110:526-535.

10.Cukrowicz KC, Otamendi A, Pinto JV, Bernert RA, Krakow B, Joiner TE. The impact of insomnia and sleep disturbances on depression and suicidality. Dreaming 2006;16:1-10.

11.Coolidge FL, Segal DL, Coolidge CM, Spinath F, Gottschling J. Do nightmares and generalized anxiety disorder in childhood and adolescence have a common genetic origin? Behav Genet 2010;34:73-82.

12.Simor P, Horvath K, Gombos F, Takacs KP, Bodizs R. Disturbed dreaming and sleep quality: Altered sleep architecture in subjects with frequent nightmares. Eur Arch Psychiatry Clin Neurosci 2012;262:687-696.

13.Sim LA, McAlpine DE, Grothe KB, Himes SM, Cockerill RG, Clark MM. Identification and treatment of eating disorders in the primary care setting. Mayo Clin Proc 2010;85:746-751.

14.Walsh JME, Wheat ME, Freund K. Detection, evaluation, and treatment of eating disorders: The role of the primary care physician. J Gen Intern Med 2000;15:577-590.

15.Bailey SD, Ricciardelli, LA. Social comparisons, appearance related comments, contingent self-esteem and their relationships with body dissatisfaction and eating disturbance among women. Eat Behav 2010;11:107-112.

16.Garner DM, Olmstead MP, Polivy J. Development and validation of a multidimensional eating disorder inventory for anorexia nervosa and bulimia. Int J Eat Disord 1983;2:15-34.

17.Micali N, Martini MG, Thomas JJ, Eddy KT, Kothari R, Russell E, Bulik CM, Treasure J. Lifetime and 12-month prevalence of eating disorders amongst women in mid-life: a population-based study of diagnoses and risk factors. BMC Med 2017;15:12.

18.Diemer EW, Grant JD, Munn-Chernoff MA, Patterson DA, Duncan AE. Gender identity, sexual orientation, and eating-related pathology in a national sample of college students. J Adolesc Health 2015;57:144-149.

19.Brink SG, Allan JAB. Dreams of anorexic and bulimic women: A research study. J Anal Psychol 1992;37:275-297.

20.Claridge G, Davis C, Bellhouse M, Kaptein S. Borderline personality, nightmares, and adverse life events in the risk for eating disorders. Pers Individ Dif 1998;25:339-351.

21.Schredl M, Montasser A. Dreaming and eating disorders. Sleep and Hypnosis 1999;1:225-231.

22.Levin R, Fireman G. Nightmare prevalence, nightmare distress, and self-reported psychological disturbance. Sleep 2002;25:205-212.

23.O'Brien KS, Latner JD, Puhl RM, Vartanian LR, Giles C, Griva K, Carter A. The relationship between weight stigma and eating behavior is explained by weight bias internalization and psychological distress. Appetite 2016;102:70-76.

24.Belicki K, Belicki D. Predisposition for nightmares: A study of hypnotic ability, vividness of imagery, and absorption. J Clin Psychol 1986;42:714-718.

25.Schredl M. Effects of state and trait factors on nightmare frequency. European Achieves of Psychiatry and Clinical Neuroscience 2003;253:241-247.

26.Stumbrys T, Erlacher D, Schredl M. Reliability and stability of lucid dream and nightmare frequency scales. International Journal of Dream Research 2013;6:123-126.

27.American Academy of Sleep Medicine. International classification of sleep disorders: Diagnostic & coding manual. 2nd ed. Westchester, IL: Author. 2005.

28.Rosenvinge JH, Perry JA, Bjùrgum L, Bergersen TD, Silvera DH, Holte A. A new instrument measuring disturbed eating patterns in community populations: Development and initial validation of a five-item scale (EDS-5). Eur Eat Disord Rev 2001;9:123-132.

29.Kelly WE. A general psychological distress scale for the Ausburg Multidimensional Personality Instrument. Unpublished manuscript. Robert Morris University.

30.Gilboa-Schechtman E, Avnon L, Zubery E, Jeczmien P. Emotional processing in eating disorders: specific impairment or general distress related deficiency? Depression and Anxiety 2006;23:331-339.

31.Kráčmarová L, Plháková A. Nightmares and their consequences in relation to state factors, absorption, and boundaries. Dreaming 2015;25:312-320.

32.Dellaverson V. The desomatizing selfobject transference: Analysis of an eating disorder. Clin Soc Work J 1997;25:107-119.

33.Kohut H. The restoration of the self. New York: International Universities Press. 1977.

34.Lopez FG, Mitchell P, Gormley B. Adult attachment orientations and college student distress: Test of a mediational model. J Couns Psychol 2002;49:460-467.
Copyright © 2016 Bagcilar Medical Bulletin All rights reserved. Yerküre Tanıtım ve Yayıncılık A.Ş.