In this study, there were 185 patients who were suffering from migraine; 133 (71.8%) patients were women and 52 (28.1%) patients were men. The average age was between 34.6 ± 11.1 years, in which the mean of age for women was 34.69 years, a little older than men 34.25 years, although this difference was not statistically significant. Out of 185 patients, 155 (83.7%) had nocturnal attacks. Among those with nocturnal attacks and those without it, there were not any meaningful differences. Those with nocturnal attacks had suffered from attacks for 7.9 ± 8.3 years comparatively those without nocturnal for 9.2 ± 1.01 years. This difference between these two groups was not statistically significant.
The average number of migraine attacks per month, for those with nocturnal attacks was 7.8 ± 5.7 and that without nocturnal attacks was 4.6 ± 4.9. The difference between these 2 groups, based on the average number of migraine attacks per month, was statistically significant (P = 0.006). Seventy two percent of those with the experience of nocturnal attacks were women and the rest were men (27.1%). Among those with nocturnal attacks and without it, sex did not cause any significant difference. Considering educational level, 14.1% were illiterate, 15.1% had primary (elementary) education, 50.8% high school education and 20% university degree. There was not a significant difference in level of education between those with migraine attacks and those with nocturnal attacks. Regarding marital status, 48 out of 185 (25.9%) were single, 131 (70.8%) were married, 3 (1.6%) widowed and 3 (1.6%) divorced. Out of 155 patients with the experience of nocturnal attacks, 24.5% was single, 1.3% widows, 72.9% married and 1.3% divorced. There were not any meaningful relations based on marital status, between those with nocturnal attacks and those without it. In this study migraine was divided into two groups: with aura and without aura. Out of 155 with the experience of nocturnal attacks, 54 (34.8%) had migraine with aura and 101 (65.2%) migraine without aura. There was no significant relation between the kind of migraine and nocturnal attacks. Also, out of 185 patients with migraine, 130 (70.3%) of them remembered their dreams, while among them, 114 persons had nocturnal attacks and 16 without any attacks. No significant relation between remembering dreams and nocturnal attacks could be found (P = 0.02).
At investigation of characters in dreams, in all 231 dreams, there were character factors. In all 676 characters which mentioned in dreams of patients with nocturnal attacks, 123 were alive characters, 24 dead, 29 animal, 197 the patient himself, 66 women, 116 known, 80 men and 41 foreigners. Besides, those without nocturnal attacks had 20 characters alive, 1 dead, 3 animals, 28 dreamer, 5 women, 18 known, 14 men, 2 strangers. No significant statistical difference could be found in characters of those with nocturnal attacks or without it. Furthermore, regarding different characters in dream content, in half of dreams with alive characters, 60% with dead, 56.3% animals, 52% dreamers, 50.7% female, 50% known, 45.7% male and 65.1% strangers, after dreaming the patient experienced headache attacks. Between the characters in dreams and headache attacks after dreaming, no significant relation was found in any of characters.
In 185 dreams out of 231, activities were observed. A survey on these activities showed that 3 (0.89%) were auditory, 6 (1.79%) mental, 13 (3.88%) nonverbal, 193 (57.91%) movement, 28 (8.35%) visual and 91 (27.16%) verbal. Investigating these activities in dreams of those with nocturnal and without nocturnal, no significant statistical differences were observed. Also, concerning headache attacks after dreaming, in 33.3% of dreams with auditory activities, 83.3% with mental, 61.5% nonverbal, 42.3% movement, 60.7% visual and 47.3% verbal, headache attacked after dreaming. There were not any significant relations between activities in dreams and headache attacks after them. Out of 71 dreams with the content of aggression, 61 were related to those with nocturnal attacks, 139 out of 160 dreams without aggression content, were for those with nocturnal attacks. In general, no significant relation was found between aggression content and having nocturnal attacks or not. Also, out of 71 aggressive dreams, 42 showed headache after dreaming, and in 160 without aggression, 78 had headache after dreaming, that proves no significant relation between aggression content in dreaming and immediate headache attacks after it.
Regarding friendliness in dreaming, 70 dreams out of 231 had this content that among them, in 26 dreams (37.1%) the participant was donator, in 4 (5.7%) observer and in 40 (57.1%) receiver of kindness. Out of 70 dreams with such content, in 20 (27.5%) headaches preceded dreaming, in 7 dreams (35%) the participant was donator, in 2 (10%) observer and in 11 (55%) receiver. There were not any significant relations between the role of patient in friendliness and attacks after dreaming. But dreams with the content of friendliness and headache attacks seemed related (P = 0.001). Besides, 67 dreams (95.7%) out of 70 with friendliness content were for those with nocturnal attacks, among them in 25 (37.3%) the patient was donator, in 4 (6%) observer and in 38 (56.7%) receiver. But no difference was found, between this group and those without nocturnal, regarding the role of patient in dreams. Generally, there were significant relations between patients with nocturnal and without, in dreams with the content of friendliness and those without (P = 0.001) (
Table 1). Six dreams (2.5%) out of 231 had sexuality content. In 4 dreams (66.7%), the participant was observer of intercourse; in 2 dreams (33.3%) participant was recipient. In all 6, after dreaming there was headache attack and the patient had nocturnal attacks. There was no sign of homosexuality.
Out of 33 dreams with the content of success/failure, 30 dreams were for patients with nocturnal attacks, among these dreams, the ones with the content of failure had the highest frequency (24 dreams = 80%). Also 33 dreams (14.2%) out of 231 had success/failure content. Among these 33 dreams 18 (45.5%) headache attacks were after dreaming. No meaningful differences were observed between the content of success/failure and headache attacks after dreaming (P = 0.03), but most of the attacks were after dreams with the content of failure. Emotional content in dreaming included 77 dreams out of 231, which had this content in different forms, which included: 28 dreams (36.3%) with sadness, 24 (31.2%) anger, 4 (5.2%) confusion, 21 (27.3%) happiness. Out of 77 dreams, in 71, the patient had nocturnal attacks. The highest frequency in content, among patients with nocturnal attacks, was in sadness (24 dreams, 33.8%) and the lowest frequency in confusion (4 dreams, 5.6%).
In all emotional categories, the number of those with nocturnal were more than those without, but this difference did not seem statistically significant. Out of 77 with the content of emotion, in 42 dreams (54.5%) the patient had experienced headache attacks after dreaming, which among them 19 dreams (45.2%) had sadness content, 24 (31.2%) anger, 4 (5.2%) confusion and 21 (27.3%) happiness. There was significant relation between the kind of emotion in dreams and headache attacks after dreaming (P = 0.001). In 91 dreams, out of 231, the content was bad/good fortune (
Table 2). Ten dreams (11%) with good luck content and 81 (89%) with bad luck. Out of 91 dreams, 77 (84.6%) were for patients with nocturnal attacks, which consisted 72 dreams (93.5%) with the content of bad fortune and 5 with good luck. In dreams with the content of bad fortune, nocturnal attacks were more significant (P = 0.001). Out of 91 dreams with the content of good/bad fortune, in 53 (58.2%) headache attacks were experienced after dreaming, and in all the content was related to bad fortune. Among 38 dreams without any attacks, 28 (73.7%) were with the content of bad fortune and 10 (26.3%) good. Significant statistical relations were among the content with good/bad fortune and headache attacks after dreaming (P = 0.001).
A survey on environments showed 309 different forms. Known environments had the highest frequency (129 dreams) and strange ones with the lowest, just in 9 dreams. In 162, the patients had the experience of headache attacks after dreaming, but without any significant relations between this variable and kinds of environment. Also, in all 309 different locations, 267 were for those with nocturnal attacks. In all different environments, the highest frequency was for those with nocturnal attacks rather than those without it, but this difference was not statistically significant. In 41 dreams out of 231, details in environment were mentioned that the total member was 243 different points. Elements (points) related to the nature had the highest frequency (43 or 17.7%) and the lowest was for details related to entertainers (3 or 1%). One-hundred eight (44.4%) were among dreams which followed by headache attacks, but no relation was found between attacks after dreaming and details. Two-hundred fourteen (88.1%) of those details were in dreams of patients with nocturnal attacks. In general, the frequency of mentioning details in all categories, were more in dreams of patients with nocturnal attacks, but this difference did not seem significant in any of categories.
In investigating descriptive elements, 3 different categories included: descriptive scale, chronological scale and negative. Out of 231 dreams, 40 had these elements that the highest frequency was for the size [
11]. In 36 after dreaming was the experience of headache attacks, among the highest frequency related to temperature and size with 7 dreams and the lowest to negative scale with 2 dreams, without any significant relation between the objects in dreams and headache attacks after them. Also, among 60 objects in dreams, 51 were in dreams of patients with nocturnal attacks, in which size had the highest frequency (10 items) and negative scale with the lowest (2 items). There were not any meaningful relations between having nocturnal attacks and type of descriptive elements in dreams.
Table 1. Relation Between the Dreams with the Content of Friendliness and Headache Attacks
Variables Migraine With Nocturnal Attacks Total P-Value Headache Attacks After Dreaming Total P-Value Yes No Yes No Dreams Type 0.001 0.001 With content of friendliness 67 3 70 20 50 70 Without content of friendliness 53 108 161 100 61 161 Total 120 111 231 120 111 231
Table 2. Relation Between Content of Dreams (Good/Bad Fortune) With Nocturnal Attacks and Attacks After Dreaming
Variables Migraine With Nocturnal Attacks Total P-Value Headache Attacks After Dreaming Total P-Value No Yes No Yes Content of Dreams 0.001 0.001 Good fortune 5 5 10 10 0 10 Bad fortune 9 72 81 28 53 81 Total 14 77 91 38 53 91