Want to create "the perfect dream?"

Want to dream about this? The right soundscape may help. (Przemyslaw Skibinski/shutterstock.com)

Want to dream about this? The right soundscape may help. (Przemyslaw Skibinski/shutterstock.com)

Relaxnews

, Last Updated: 12:22 PM ET

Psychologist Richard Wiseman of the University of Hertfordshire announced the results of a two-year dream control study this week. Findings show it's entirely possible for people to "create the perfect dream," and therefore wake up happier and better-rested.

In 2010 the professor worked with app developers YUZA to develop Dream:ON, an iPhone app that monitors people while sleeping and plays a "soundscape" when they dream.

The app, which was downloaded more than 500,000 times, was designed to have a positive effect on dreams. All soundscapes were created to "evoke pleasant scenarios" such as lying on the beach or taking a woodland stroll. The app used a gentle alarm at the end of the dream so people could record their dreams in the app's built-in diary.

The research team was able to study millions of dream reports and found soundscapes did influence dreaming.

"If someone chose the nature landscape then they were more likely to have a dream about greenery and flowers. In contrast, if they selected the beach soundscape then they were more likely to dream about the sun beating down on their skin," the professor said in the university's press release.

One particularly fascinating aspect of the study was that people's dreams tended to get "bizarre" around the full moon.

"In 2013, neuroscientists from the University of Basel discovered that people experience more disturbed sleeping patterns around the time of a full Moon," Wiseman noted. "We have seen a similar pattern."

It was also discovered that particular soundscapes had more positive effects on dreams.

"Having positive dreams helps people wake up in a good mood, and boosts their productivity. We have now discovered a way of giving people sweet dreams, and this may also form the basis for a new type of therapy to help those suffering from certain psychological problems, such as depression," the professor said.


Videos

Photos