A Dream Cycle The Dreamer

1475 Words6 Pages
Imagine, during some much-needed sleep, that an anthropomorphic demon forms, peering from the opposite side of the room, aliens begin conducting strange experiments, hooded ghosts murmur incomprehensive secrets. All of this as a strange bout of full-body paralysis takes hold. How does one explain away an experience as strange as this? For some, it feels like waking up dead; being confined and unable to move. Literally paralyzed. This paralysis is only worsened by a growing sense of alarm. Is there is an intruder or something otherworldly lurking about? The brain bends the rules, as if eager to conceive the waking nightmare that has confounded many minds, from scientists to philosophers and even religious figures. Sometimes referred to as…show more content…
According to a study in 2011 by Pennsylvania State University, 7.6 percent of the general population has problems with sleep paralysis. The trouble is that sleep paralysis can be dismissed as no more than a vivid nightmare. Studies have proven that sleep paralysis can happen to anyone and indeed will at some point in their life; however, it is possible that an episode can go unnoticed. Sleep paralysis occurs at one of two times: Hypnagogic sleep paralysis occurs as one falls asleep. Hypnopompic sleep paralysis occurs as one awakes from sleep. In both cases, it is believed to be a result of disrupted REM sleep which routinely induces complete muscle atonia, relaxing and easing the body into a state of voluntary paralysis. This is to prevent sleepers from acting out their dreams, potentially harming themselves in the process. REM sleep disruption insists that the sleeper is having troubling transitioning into various stages of sleep, like a computer failing to process data. Scientists have yet to uncover any empirical evidence that could explain this faulty transition. The paralysis remains, yet the mind is aware. This might explain why many who have experienced this phenomenon feel as though they have woken up in a coffin or grave. Michael Breus, Ph.D., clinical psychologist and fellow at the American Academy of Sleep Medicine helps elaborate: “Most patients say the same thing to describe sleep paralysis: that it feels like you woke up dead. You know
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