Show Summary Details
Page of

date: 25 September 2021

p. 887. Dreaming as delirium: sleep and mental illnesslocked

p. 887. Dreaming as delirium: sleep and mental illnesslocked

  • J. Allan Hobson


‘Dreaming as delirium’ shows that dreaming and severe mental illness are not only analogous, but identical. It is easy to imagine that physical changes in brain state can produce psychosis, but also that the perfectly normal changes of sleep have very dramatic effects on our mental capacities. Psychosis is, by definition, a mental state characterised by hallucinations and/or delusions and dreaming is most like the organic mental illness delirium. Sleep loss is common in and contributes powerfully to the development of psychosis. The connections between major depression, which is also thought to be enhanced by cholinergic (acetylcholine) systems, mood, and REM sleep are considered.

Access to the complete content on Very Short Introductions online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.