Sleep paralysis has been an experience by most people since the beginning of existence and is known to be a sleep disorder or parasomnia, both mysterious and terrifying.
From this, we hear a lot of ghost stories and mysterious events with “things that go bump in the night.”
“50 years of age, in good plight [health], strong,” is the most unsettling experience that was properly documented in a medical treatise in the 17th century by Isbrand Van Diembroeck, a Dutch physician.
The case was about a woman who complained about mysterious experiences at night.
“When she was composing herself to sleep,” explains Van Diembroeck, “sometimes she believed the devil lay upon her and held her down, sometimes that she was choked by a great dog or thief lying upon her breast, so that she could hardly speak or breathe, and when she endeavored to throw off the burden, she was not able to stir her members.”
The condition the woman in Van Dimbroeck’s account experienced became known as “sleep paralysis”
“A common, generally benign, parasomnia characterized by brief episodes of inability to move or speak combined with waking consciousness” is how researchers define this phenomenon
What can you do to prevent it?
Though mostly anecdotal, prevention and coping methods for sleep paralysis seem to be validated by numerous individuals that claim these solutions works for them.
- Since studies show that sleeping on your back can cause the event of sleep paralysis, you need to avoid sleeping on your back. Also, waking up during sleep and going back to sleep is another risk factor to that you might want to avoid.
- Evidence shows that of stimulants like tobacco, alcohol and coffee aren’t a risk factor for sleep paralysis. The chances of sleep paralysis can be affected if you mix the stimulants as your brain can only handle so much.
- You can cope better with the experience by picking up meditation and muscle relaxing methods.
- Moving your fingers or toes will be difficult during the moment of sleep paralysis but persistently trying is well known solution that eventually get you out of the experience.
- It could be related to your subconscious reminding you of experiences in your daily that causes anxiety or it could be your very conscience that is causing this, informing you to confront whatever you need to confront. If this is the case and you’re not sure how to resolve this, seeing a therapist that specializes in cognitive behavioral therapy will shed some light on the situation.
The authors of the Consciousness and Cognition study says that there is a distinct “possibility that frightening [isolated sleep paralysis] sensed presence experiences […] may contribute to maintenance of an individual’s negative social imagery biases.”
9th April 2020 22:05
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