Causes, Symptoms and Treatment of Sleep Paralysis

January 21, 2023 10:07 pm39 commentsViews: 569

Have you ever found yourself in a deep sleep and upon waking up noticed that you were unable to move or speak? Did you feel like there was a presence in the room or even at times the feeling that this presence was restraining you by covering your mouth, or the feeling that it was sitting on your chest? In some more extreme cases it may even speak to you in what appears to be a demonic voice. If this has happened to you, then the good news is that you are not crazy or being attacked by demons as was once the belief in ancient times.

In ancient times and even in today’s most charismatic churches it was believed that when this occurred you were being accosted by demons or under satanic attack. But the truth is that this sleep disorder is recognized by the medical community as a legit condition, and it can be treated. Also there are steps that you can take to reduce the occurrence of these episodes if they happen to you.

,There are two conditions that are known as common sleep paralysis and hallucinatory sleep paralysis, the latter of the two is considered to be the rarest and most extreme. Currently it is said that 4 out of 10 people suffer from sleep paralysis disorders.

WHAT HAPPENS DURING AN EPISODE?

When you are asleep basically what happens is that your body transitions through sleep states known as NREM (non rapid eye movement) and REM (rapid eye movement). During NREM your body relaxes and begins to recharge or restore itself, this state takes up about 75% or your sleep time. Next is your REM sleep state in which you begin to become conscious and aware, although your body will still be in a relaxed state. One cycle of these two states lasts for about 90 minutes, but if you begin to wake before the cycle is completed you will experience an episode of sleep paralysis.

Basically you are between a sleeping and waking state and your mind can’t seem to tell the difference between the two. As a result you experience some or all of the symptoms mentioned above. This condition can happen during the time you are either falling asleep (hypnogogic) or as you are waking up (hypnopompic) which is the most common form.

WHAT TO DO DURING AN EPISODE

Most experts suggest that you try one of the following techniques to help you break the spell. You can begin by trying to move your eye lids and face muscles and then work on moving your fingers and toes. Or you can try what is referred to as the shout and roll method, where you can attempt to do just that. Others have reported that they have been able to break out of the spell through sheer will. Find what method works best for you and try to remain calm in the knowledge that you are just trapped between wakefulness and a dreaming state. In other words, its not real.

WHAT ABOUT TREATMENT?

There is no real treatment for the condition itself but sometimes it is common in people who suffer from narcolepsy or other underlying issues such as stress or lack of sleep. It is recommended that you improve your sleeping habits, or in some cases you take antidepressants to help regulate sleep cycles. Treat any other mental disorders that might contribute to the condition or any other disorder such as leg cramps. This condition is also believed to be brought on more frequently to those that sleep on their backs. Experts suggest that something as simple as changing your sleeping position can reduce the occurrence of these episodes.

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