Having Nightmares

Nicole Wapinsky

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Dear Nikki,

I’ve been having these really bad dreams lately, and I can’t seem to get any sleep. I dream that I’m in bed and can’t move anything but my eyes and there is a black figure in the shape of a man standing in my room watching me. What do I do? How do I make it stop?

Sincerely, Sleepless nights

Dear Sleepless Nights,

This sounds very scary and I’m sorry you’re having these kinds of dreams. This is known as sleep paralysis. Most dreams have a deep underlying meaning. Sleep researchers conclude that, in most cases, sleep paralysis is simply a sign that your body is not moving smoothly through the stages of sleep. Rarely is sleep paralysis linked to deep underlying psychiatric problems. Symptoms of sleep paralysis have been described in many ways and often attributed to an “evil” presence. The main treatment is improved sleeping habits, including going to bed at the same time every night, ensuring a comfortable sleep environment free of distractions, and avoiding caffeine before sleeping.

Sincerely, Nikki

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