Olfactory dreams, olfactory interest, and imagery : Relationships to olfactory memory
- Publisher: Stockholms universitet, Psykologiska institutionen
Psykologi | Psychology
mesheuropmc: psychological phenomena and processes
Existing evidence for olfactory imagery is mixed and mainly based on reports from hallucinations and volitional imagery. Using a questionnaire, Stevenson and Case (2005) showed that olfactory dreams provided a good source for olfactory imagery studies. This study applied an extended version of the same questionnaire and examined olfactory dreams and their relation to real-life experienced odors, volitional imagery, and olfactory interest. Results showed that olfactory dreams were similar to real-life odors, positively related to olfactory interest and in some extent to volitional imagery. In a follow-up study, two subgroups, one with olfactory dreamers who scored high in olfactory interest and volitional imagery, and one non-olfactory dream group with low scores in interest and imagery, completed an olfactory test battery including odor threshold, episodic odor memory, and odor identification. The group of olfactory dreamers was significantly better in both odor identification and memory, but there were no differences between groups in threshold. These findings support the notion of olfactory imagery, and that individuals experiencing olfactory dreams, score high in olfactory interest and volitional imagery and also remember more olfactory information than persons who score low in these measures.