Babies dream
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Babies dream

Babies do show evidence of dreaming, although what they dream about is anybody's guess. Even a newborn infant will have rapid eye movement, or REM, sleepthe kind of sleep in which we dreammost of the time. That's a lot of REM sleep, considering that babies spend twice as much time sleeping as adults do, usually about two-thirds of their day. Scientists believe there is a connection between REM sleep and brain development, citing evidence that, for instance, REM sleep occurs 80 percent of the time in an infant born ten weeks prematurely, dropping to 50 percent in the full-term baby, and 35 percent in the one-year-old. Why do babies dream so much? REM sleep may provide "nerve exercise" from within the brain for newborns until they can get more stimulation from the external environment as they get older. The trend continues as humans age. Five-year-olds dream 20 percent of the time they are sleeping, which is roughly the same as the percentage of time adults spend dreaming each night. As people continue to age, studies show, the percentage of time spent dreaming drops off to as low as 13 percent in some people.

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