Dissociative symptoms may be the by-products of a labile sleep-wake cycle (Koffel and Watson, 2009a). This may help to explain why dissociation overlaps with fantasy proneness and cognitive failures. Using path analysis, we tested to what extent data gathered in a nonclinical, predominantly female sample (N=139) supported two conceptual models. The first model assumes that unusual sleep experiences increase fantasy proneness and cognitive failures, which in turn encourage trait dissociation and reports of trauma. The second model assumes that trauma leads to dissociative experiences both directly and through its influence on sleep. In this cross-sectional design, the data were reasonably well described by both models. Importantly, in both models, unusual sleep experiences serve as antecedents of trait dissociation. Our analysis underlines the importance of unusual sleep experiences and may inspire treatment intervention focusing on sleep normalization.
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- Dissociation, Sleep-wake cycle, Unusual sleep experiences, Fantasy proneness, Cognitive failures, POSTTRAUMATIC-STRESS-DISORDER, SLEEP-RELATED EXPERIENCES, FANTASY PRONENESS, COGNITIVE FAILURES, CHILDHOOD TRAUMA, INDIVIDUAL-DIFFERENCES, PREVALENCE, DISTRESS, IMPACT, ADULTS