If you have ever been in a state of being half-asleep, and conscious, but unable to move, then you have likely experienced this terrifying trait: sleep paralysis. While it can happen in adults who are going through undue stress, it is even more common in children and teenagers. This is a scary experience for anyone, as it can be disorienting and mentally traumatic. It is not difficult to imagine how fearful children must be when going through this without understanding what is happening. Let’s examine how sleep paralysis in kids and teens can occur.
Sleep Paralysis in Kids and Teens
Today, your sleep specialist will discuss further details about sleep paralysis in kids and teens, offering an explanation of symptoms as well as available treatments that can help keep these terrifying night occurrences at bay.
Defining Children’s Sleep Paralysis
Sleep paralysis happens to children almost always during the transitional period of waking up. Somewhere between being fully asleep and fully awake, sleep paralysis makes one conscious but completely unable to move. During the state of sleep paralysis, muscles are quite literally paralyzed except for those used to breathe and move the eyes.
What makes sleep paralysis so scary is not just the child’s inability to move, but also the likelihood that there will be some form of hallucination. While some people see things, others have tactile or auditory hallucinations throughout the period of paralysis.
What Causes Sleep Paralysis?
It can be difficult to determine the exact cause of sleep paralysis as there can be several factors at play. Normally, sleep paralysis is a result of an interruption in the hypotonia system, which keeps the body still during sleep. This is not supposed to happen after the person regains consciousness.
Most bouts of sleep paralysis last less than two minutes. But longer stretches of this condition may point to a different cause. A deep part of the REM cycle may have been interrupted. This causes a gap between the state of the body and the state of the mind. While the exact cause can still be unclear, it is known that children who suffer from this condition are likely to suffer from it regularly.
Sleep Paralysis Treatment and Prevention
Has your child been diagnosed with sleep paralysis? Then they have likely experienced this episode more than once by the age of 19. We recommend that you set up an appointment with a children’s sleep specialist. In fact, as soon as after the first occurrence, especially after repeated occurrences. Causes of this condition can come from stress or a physical injury. And appropriate treatment will be recommended based on the frequency of the nightmares as well as other physical symptoms.
The best way to continue preventing sleep paralysis is by establishing a new sleep routine. Ideally one that will encourage them to sleep longer and healthier every night. High levels of stress, whether coming from home or school, can cause your child to sleep poorly. Have a conversation with them about what’s going on early. That way, they know not to panic too much when it happens again. Over time, this will occur less and less.
Invest in Top-Tier Sleep Paralysis Treatment Today
Your child or teenager may not be having the greatest time tending to their health needs due to these massive sleeping problems. Sleep paralysis doesn’t just cause an imbalance in the body, but it also creates mental turmoil as well. It is a good idea to visit your doctor for a unique and custom-adapted sleep paralysis treatment for your child. This type of treatment plan will pinpoint the exact causes of sleep paralysis and administer a series of treatments, from in-office care to recommended lifestyle guidelines, that will lower the frequency of this scary occurrence.