Diagnosis and medication can only be given to patients that report the recurring nightmares to a psychiatrist or other physician. Medications like prazosin are sometimes used to treat nightmares in people with PTSD. Therapy usually helps to deal with the frightening themes of the nightmares and alleviate the recurrence of the dreams. The persistent nightmares will usually improve as the patient gets older. Treatments are generally very successful.A recent review of epidemiologic studies on insomnia suggests that about 33% of the population suffers from symptoms of insomnia. If frequency and severity cutoffs are included, the prevalence is about 16% to 21% and 10% to 28%, respectively.
Nightmare disorder, also known as 'dream anxiety disorder', is a sleep disorder characterized by frequent nightmares. The nightmares, which often portray the individual in a situation that jeopardizes their life or personal safety, usually occur during the REM stages of sleep. Though such nightmares occur within many people, those with nightmare disorder experience them with a greater frequency.Nightmares are associated with a range of psychiatric symptoms, full-blown psychiatric disorders such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and sleep disturbances.