Most people around the world have experienced this feeling at least once in their lifetime. Where they have might wake up and feel like they are awake but not quite. The room is dark and you are unable to move a muscle or utter a sound. They might have even seen a shadowy figure hovering in the corner with the deepest darkest eye, or even felt a pressure on their chest or a sense of a hand wrapped around their throat? Other times, they would have felt removed from their frozen bodies, as if they’re floating out of their bedsheets into the air. Well. these bizarre experiences are a diagnosable and fairly common sleeping disorder known as sleep paralysis.

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Sleep paralysis is simply an extension of the dream state called Rapid Eye Movement or REM which technically is harmless. But people experience an inability to move, speak, or control their body, despite being conscious and wanting to. Also sometimes accompanied by hallucinations which is something people do not seek to repeat once they have experienced it.

Sleep paralysis usually first occurs in the teen years. Then occurs more often in the 20s and 30s and might continue into later years. But sleep paralysis is not a serious medical risk.

According to a study published by Sleep Medicine, it was reported that out of 185 patients who were diagnosed with sleep paralysis, 58% sensed an evil presence in the room with them and about 22% actually saw a person in the room, usually a stranger.

The risk of developing sleep paralysis may increase with a myriad of factors like substance use, genetic factors, stress, a history of trauma, a psychiatric diagnosis, and poor physical health and sleep quality.

There is no proper set of a cure for sleep paralysis, but doctors usually advise their diagnosed patients to revamp their sleep schedule and maintain a better bedtime routine and in more extreme cases, patients may be prescribed a low dose of antidepressants.

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