How To Stop Sleep Paralysis
Sleep paralysis is not a pleasant experience and if you’ve ever suffered from it you will know exactly why that is. Some people have also likely experienced sleep paralysis without realising it, so before we look at ways to combat it let’s take a closer look at how sleep paralysis can affect people and why it happens in the first place.
Sleep paralysis is a strange and almost otherworldly experience, you’re conscious of your surroundings but are unable to move. Sufferers of sleep paralysis have described it as like being stuck in the void between being awake and being asleep.
It’s a very strange thing to experience and people who have never experienced sleep paralysis themselves will likely have trouble understanding what it is like. It also affects people differently some people even pass of sleep paralysis as a strange dream or nightmare.
Some people have even reported hearing strange sounds or seeing strange shapes while stuck in sleep paralysis. It’s hard to confirm any of these experience as true or not, the rise of internet creepypastas as made sleep paralysis a very in vogue experience and it’s fair to surmise that some people may have exaggerated their experiences a little when sharing them online.
However, at the same time sleep paralysis does interfere with REM sleep and can happen when you’re falling asleep and waking up. So, it does certainly seem plausible that people could experience strange visions and voices.
Many people who have experienced sleep paralysis won’t be able to talk but because they are still at least somewhat partly conscious they can still hear. Sleep paralysis when you’re falling asleep is called hypnagogic sleep paralysis while it is referred to as hypnopompic sleep paralysis if it occurs while you’re waking up.
Both types of sleep paralysis share the same symptoms and it can affect anyone regardless of age or gender. Teenagers, in particular, are one of the most likely groups to be affected by sleep paralysis as are people with pre-existing mental health conditions like bipolar disorder for example. So, now you know a bit more about what the effects of sleep paralysis are how can you prevent it?
Stopping Sleep Paralysis
Sleep paralysis can be a reoccurring problem or it might only happen once and then it might never happen again for years. But there are numerous ways you can help combat the problem and stop it from happening again.
And one of the best ways to do this, whenever possible, is to eliminate the outlining cause. So, what could this be you ask? That all really depends on your own individual circumstances sleep paralysis can be the result of a poor sleeping routine, a side effect of certain medications, a symptom of other sleep conditions like narcolepsy, an effect of substance abuse or it could just happen because you’re having a bad night’s sleep.
Below I’ve outlined some things to try if you’re having trouble with sleep paralysis remember if you are having repeated episodes of sleep paralysis or think it could be linked to a pre-existing condition then going to see a doctor will always be the best course of action.
Get Enough Sleep
Sleep paralysis can happen for a number of reasons but one of the main causes of it is because of a poor sleep pattern. If you have continuous late nights and just generally don’t stick to your essential 7 – 8 hours in bed then sleep paralysis can be just one of the many problems that can occur.
So, if you’re not getting enough sleep on a regular basis make some lifestyle changes so you can get enough sleep to fully rest your mind and body. Sometimes all it can take to break a cycle of sleep problems like sleep paralysis is ensuring you get enough time in bed.
A Good Sleep Routine
Getting enough hours in bed is important but that alone might not always be enough to shake problems like sleep paralysis. You sleep routine is also very important which is why you should aim to stick to the same pattern whenever possible.
Let’s say you usually go to bed at 10 PM and wake up at 7 AM the odd variation won’t usually be a problem but if you’re going to sleep and waking up at different times every day it can cause problems like sleep paralysis. So, get into a good routine and try to stick to it whenever possible.
Regular exercise can help your body in a number of ways and it can even help when it comes to tackling problems likes sleep paralysis. Light to medium intensity exercise can actually help you get a better night’s sleep although you should try to do your workout in the early morning or afternoon at the latest.
You might also want to try exercising your mind by trying meditation which many people have claimed is good for relaxing themselves and freeing their mind of worry. Feelings of anxiousness and worry are believed to help bring about sleep paralysis so it could certainly be beneficial. Many people also utilise practices like yoga to exercise both their body and mind at the same time.
If you think your sleep paralysis is being caused because of a sleep disorder or a mental health condition then you should go to see a doctor. Sleep paralysis is difficult to treat but some medications can be prescribed to help rid you of the symptoms.
Because sleep paralysis is very unpredictable and can affect people in very unusual and sometimes frightening ways it can actually cause people to become anxious and fearful about going to sleep. So, if this has happened to you going to see a doctor would also be for the best as medication will be the fastest way to alleviate the symptoms.
Sleep paralysis is a strange condition, it might only happen to you once in your entire lifetime or it could happen repeatedly. It can be difficult to stop but contrary to popular belief there are ways to combat it.