Self asks: what happens when your nightmares are more than just an occasional annoyance and actually interfere with your day-to-day life in some way?

Michael Nadorff, Ph.D., an assistant professor of psychology at Mississippi State University who researches sleep disorders, tells SELF that having a nightmare about once a week may be a sign to talk to a doctor about it, but it really depends on the person. “We often think about frequency, but severity is just as important,” he says.