‘Night terror’ a common complaint
You may have heard of sleep walking or talking, but imagine being ‘glued’ to your bed, unable to move or talk, with ‘demons’ around you. This is a condition neurologists describe as sleep paralysis.
The American Centre for Psychiatry and Neurology in Dubai recently hosted the fourth Neuroscience Congress, which included a panel of experts talking about sleeping disorders that can make life very uncomfortable.
Insomnia and narcolepsy are the most common disorders, but at the extreme end of the scale is sleep paralysis, or night terror.
Experts say that although there are no lasting effects, much like panic attacks, sleep paralysis episodes can be frightening.
Najma Firas, 20, a LibyanAmerican student, said she experiences sleep paralysis about four nights a night.
She told 7DAYS she has experienced ‘shadowy figures’ pulling on her feet each night and sometimes sitting on her chest, making it difficult for her to breathe.
She wakes, but is temporarily paralysed and unable to shout for help.
Firas said: “I try to scream so someone hears me and wakes me up, but I can’t.
“It’s only low noises coming out from my mouth. It always starts off with seeing myself sleep in the room, a shadow figure approaching me and then pulling me from my feet. It’s really scary. “Some nights I’m scared to sleep. “I know there is a scientific explanation behind it, but it feels very supernatural - By Sarwat Nasir