With no AC360 airing, a visit the ATA archives was in order. After a busy holiday weekend I have sleep on my mind and wonder if after his trip to Cuba, maybe Mr. Cooper isn't thinking about sleep, too? ~
This "Night At A Sleep Clinic" segment originally aired on AC360 on November 14, 2003.
The breakdown ~
Well, most of us think of sleep as a time when our bodies shut down, but truth is a lot is going on in our brains and our muscles even while we slumber. Tonight, in our final installment of our weeklong series, "Sleepless in America," I foolishly offered myself up as a guinea pig for a night inside a sleep clinic. And as I found out, the first step is getting yourself all hooked up.
All of us go through several stages of sleep, often in 90-minute cycles that repeat throughout the night. Stage one is the transition from being awake to asleep. It starts off when your eyes slowly begin to roll.
REM sleep is the final stage of the sleep cycle. REM stands for rapid eye movement. It's the time of night we have the most vivid dreams. During REM sleep, your body's skeletal muscles shut down so you don't act out your dreams.
But some people's muscles keep working. They suffer from REM Sleep Behavior Disorder, which means they can dangerously act out their dreams. Sleep clinics are used to observe many sleep disorders, like Restless Leg Syndrome and sleep walking. Thankfully, my sleep was not so exciting. Dr. Gary Zamet monitored my sleep cycles, which turns out are pretty normal.
COOPER: I deny I snore. That is just simply not true.
Those gadgets might tell us when we're dreaming, but they certainly cannot explain our dreams at all, like the one where, you know, you're sailing the Riviera with your best buddy, P. Diddy, chilling with some Kristol, then in walks the president and your fifth grade teacher and you realize, oh, no, I'm not wear anything pants. You know, those kind of dreams.
We are joined now by someone who helps people decipher their dreams for a living, dream analyst Gayle Delaney, author of "All About Dreams."
Gayle, good to meet you. Thanks for being with us.
GAYLE DELANEY, DREAM ANALYST: Well, thank you. How was your night's sleep?
COOPER: I actually slept well. Better than I actually sleep at home. Don't ask me why.
Let's talk about dreams, though. What do dreams tell us about ourselves?
DELANEY: When we dream, we think about our lives. All of the major concerns, the conflict, the hopes, the problems we want to solve. And every single night we get a chance to work on that for a reason that we don't understand. We seem to be less defensive while we're sleeping, and so our dreams offer us a lot of insight.
COOPER: You know, it used to be people would say, oh, if you're dreaming about water it means one thing. If you're dreaming about -- is that the thought now, or is it sort of -- has dream analysis sort of evolved?
DELANEY: It has evolved. Modern dreamwork understands that your dream images mean something to you, the individual. If you dream about a dog, it depends upon whether you like dogs or hate dogs or are allergic to them what they'll mean. It depends upon whether the dog in your dream is chewing on you or saving your life. So you have to ask yourself to describe the images of your dream, and then say, how is my dream a metaphor or a parable about what's going on in my life the day before the dream?
After answering a couple of viewer e-mails, Anderson closed the segment with ...
COOPER: That's the key. All right. Gayle Delaney, fascinating to talk to you. Thanks very much for being with us.
DELANEY: Thank you, Anderson.
COOPER: Before she left, also Gayle gave us a recommendation about how you might want to try to use your dreams to actually solve a particular problem or answer a question. She says it's possible. And the way she suggests is write down the question you have before going to sleep, then repeat it to yourself as you fall asleep.
When you wake up, write down any dreams you may remember. And read your notes later to see if they form a kind of metaphor or parable that might shed light on your problem. See if it works.
Another "Ask Anderson" question was posted to 'Anderson's' YouTube page on Thursday ~
And AC360.com added a new video ~
AC361: Cooper weighs in on the art of booking
Anderson speaks to producer Ben Finley about booking guests for 360