It is possible to wake up from a nightmare. Sleep paralysis is a condition that affects more than 40 percent of the world’s population and causes paralysis and suffocation.
It’s a scary experience that you’ll never want to have again, but it can often happen if you’re going through a certain period or if you have bad habits.
Scientific research has identified the causes of sleep paralysis and some ways to better manage it.
What is sleep paralysis?
Sleep paralysis, also known as hypnagogic paralysis, is experienced as a real nightmare. You suddenly wake up in the middle of the night and you can’t move your muscles. Most of the time you cannot breathe and you may even have hallucinations.
This strange combination of dream and reality can produce terrifying hallucinations. There are three types of hallucinations caused by sleep paralysis. The first is the presence of an intruder, the second is chest pressure, sometimes accompanied by experiences of aggression, and the third is a feeling of floating or leaving the person’s body.
Disorders associated with sleep paralysis
Physiologically, during deep sleep (REM) parts of the brain reduce skeletal muscle tone and counteract the action of the spinal motor neurons. This is to prevent movements that could injure the person while sleeping.
The loss of effectiveness of the musculature on the one hand and the non-synchronization of the perception system, eye and breathing movements on the other hand mean that people can no longer move when they are awake. The situation always resolves after a few minutes of waiting.
Sleep paralysis may be more common with some conditions, such as narcolepsy. It is known that sleep paralysis is generally associated with strong feelings of anxiety when hallucinations are present.
Panic attacks can also trigger sleep paralysis.
Why does sleep paralysis occur?
The main causes of sleep paralysis are emotional. Anxiety and stress play an important role. Lack of rest, irregular rhythm of life and genetic predisposition are also important risk factors.
Studies show that this is common among college students and older people with mental health issues. Students are often stressed and anxious about exams. It is quite common for this to occur during an intense college preparation process.
What to do with sleep paralysis?
The most important key to managing sleep paralysis is awareness. Being aware of the situation is the best thing you can do to take control.
Considering this has happened before, you can just wait for it to pass. Moving certain parts of the body, such as Your big toe or your eyes helps you focus and lets you know you’re in control of your body.
The most important thing is to understand that you have a dream and try to calm down. Avoid getting angry and scared as this will only make the situation worse and you may have an even more frightening and traumatic experience.
To prevent sleep paralysis, especially coffee and co stimulant Substance intake should be reduced. It is also important to create a pleasant sleeping climate, choose the bed carefully and set the room temperature to 18 to 20 degrees.
Anxiety and depression are the main causes of this disorder and can only be kept under control with the help of a specialist. Muscle tension during the day can also trigger sleep paralysis, and one of the best ways to relieve that tension is with a nice warm bath.
Regular physical activity is another remedy, but avoid doing it at night to help you sleep and improve sleep.
Sleeping on your back can trigger sleep paralysis because it increases the feeling of suffocation.