Imagine waking up from your sleep, but you’re unable to move. You feel paralyzed, trapped in your own body as the clock ticks. Slowly, terror fills you to the brim as you feel a presence…someone that wants to hurt you. And then you see it — a sleep paralysis demon! But why do you see it? And what can you do about it? Carry on reading to find out.
What is Sleep Paralysis?
In our sleep cycle, there is a point called REM sleep. This is when our brains are very active, almost like when we’re awake. In addition, different things cross our minds, some of which we recall as dreams. During REM sleep, our body paralyzes us for our protection. This is to keep us from acting out the things that pass through the mind while sleeping.
The transition between REM sleep and waking happens smoothly for some people, whereas others experience a disruption in this phase. Hence, you are waking up, but your body still paralyzes you because the REM sleep has not ended yet. So to conclude, sleep paralysis is a condition when an individual wakes up but is unable to move for some time.
Do People Really See a Demon in Sleep Paralysis?
Some people also experience dream-like hallucinations due to sleep paralysis. Disruption in the sleep cycle might also make your brain confuse reality for something horrifying. Your brain might mistake a stand at the corner of your room for a tall, scary man. Since REM sleep is a very active state, your brain might bring the dream elements to the real world.
These hallucinations may be akin to dreams, but you’re not dreaming. The dream world is overlapping the real one. Although it usually occurs visually, many people experience auditory, kinetic, tactile, or olfactory hallucinations. Therefore, the sleep paralysis demon might feel real, but, in reality, they’re just a result of disruption in your sleep cycle.
How to Prevent Yourself from Seeing Sleep Paralysis Demon
So now we know you see the demons when your sleep cycle gets disrupted and you end up waking in a dream state. Even though these sleep cycles don’t last for more than a minute, they might still make you feel scared. You can try these tips to fend the sleep paralysis demon off:
Improve Your Sleep Schedule
Try sticking to a strict sleeping routine, going to bed at the same time each night. Furthermore, make sure to sleep a full 6 to 8 hours. Poor sleep can disturb your slumber, and you might meet scary demons while resting. Lack of sleep or sleep deprivation is associated with sleep paralysis.
Adopt a Better Bedtime Routine
Tweaking your bedtime routine can help you sleep better. Hence, some things you should try are:
- Don’t sleep on a full stomach
- Avoid consuming alcohol or coffee around bedtime
- Do something relaxing before sleeping
Change Your Sleeping Position
Sleeping on your back increases the probability of waking up from sleep apnea or snoring. Try another position that feels comfortable. Moreover, place pillows on your side to avoid falling asleep on your back or turning on your back during sleep.
Get Treatment for Underlying Conditions
Mental health conditions like stress and anxiety disorders can be responsible for the frequent occurrence of sleep paralysis. Addressing the underlying issue can help you get rid of sleep paralysis and the demon that it brings.
Consult Your Doctor About Any New Medications You’re Taking
Some medications have side effects that can lead to sleep issues like visit dreams, sleep paralysis, and nightmares. If you notice sleep paralysis episodes after taking a new medication, consult your doctor.
Practice Relaxation Techniques
Practice deep breathing, yoga, meditation, and other relaxation techniques to de-stress before bed. Doing so can keep the sleep demons and stress away.
If you suspect that you have sleep paralysis and even see the demon, contact a sleep specialist. Our Sleep & Headache team is always here to help. Dial (832) 688-8886 to contact us.