Understanding Sleep and Dreaming (2nd ed.)

by William H. Moorcroft

An updated edition of Moorcroft’s 2003 volume, this new work reflects recent scientific advances in the area of sleep and disorders. As in the previous book, Understanding Sleep and Dreaming, this new edition serves as a compact overview for now sleep experts, covering physiological sleep mechanisms, brain function, psychological ramifications of sleep, dimensions of dreaming, and clinical disorders associated with sleep. It is accessibly written with specially boxed material that enhances the text. It also offers a good foundation for those who will continue sleep studies, while at the same time offering enough information for those who will apply this knowledge in other ways such as clinicians private practices or researchers. It is an excellent text for courses on sleep at the undergraduate and graduate levels. The section on sleep labs will show how computers have replaced former models of data collection and storage; includes the new area of the genetics of sleep; add a new box on teen sleep; insert a new box on the emerging information about how technology use affects sleep; emphasize the controversy over rampart, wide-spread sleep deprivation; and include a new box covering the connection between sleep loss and weight gain. Additional inclusions might incorporate current “hot topics,” such as the effect of shift work on sleep, sleep problems in adolescents, and nightmare treatment for people suffering from PTSD.


  • Springer US; March 2013
  • ISBN: 9781461464679
  • Edition: 2
  • Read online, or download in DRM-free PDF (digitally watermarked) format
  • Title: Understanding Sleep and Dreaming
  • Author: William H. Moorcroft
  • Imprint: Springer

In The Press

Praise for the First Edition:

"Although sleep has been the subject of serious study for several decades, there has not been available an integrated, introductory text for more than 10 years. Understanding Sleep and Dreaming fills this need with complete coverage of all aspects of sleep, dreaming, and sleep disorders, and is comprehensible as well as comprehensive. In accessible language, this text reviews the basic physiological mechanisms of sleep and the intertwined psychological ramifications. Most important, it is up to date, containing the latest information on the influence of orexin/hypocretin, nocturnal eating syndrome, the local cell theory of sleep, the effects of sleep deprivation, and the advantages of delaying school start times for teenagers. Distilling 25 years of combined clinical, research, and teaching experience, Dr. Moorcroft has created an excellent text for undergraduates, graduate students, and professionals, as well as for the general reader who wants a better understanding of the sleep process and its disorders."
Janet M. Dunn, MD, Rush University Medical Center


About The Author

William H. Moorcroft received his Ph.D. in psychobiology from Princeton University. He started a sleep research laboratory at Luther College in which he studied various aspects of sleep and dreaming. Since his retirement from teaching and research he shifted into a clinical practice of helping people with insomnia, bad dreams and nightmares, and young children with sleep problems by changing thoughts and behaviors rather than drugs. To date he has helped close to 500 people to sleep better. Dr. Moorcroft continues to study, lecture about, write about, and treat sleep, dreaming, and sleep disorders.