I've long been interested in the effect of music/sound on dreaming, and even built 2 apps that play music during REM period. Now I'm looking at this article about FMRI studies of a sleeping brain, and I see that it mentions:
During wakefulness, acoustic stimulation elicits activation of the auditory cortex (red). Similar stimulation during light NREM sleep stage 2 evokes transient downregulation of widespread cortical areas (blue), supposedly a sleep protective mechanism.
Acoustic stimulation in REM (rapid eye movement) sleep revealed a different brain activation pattern during phasic and tonic REM periods, with strongest suppression of cortical reactivity during phasic REM sleep periods.
Can I interpret information on that site to suggest that auditory stimulation during sleep actually makes the brain less active? Can one assume that playing audio during REM would disrupt dreaming due to transient downregulation?