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Suffering from sleep paralysis. What treatment should be done to get cured?

Hi, I am 18. I have been suffering horrible sleep paralysis for months now, and it happens about 4 times a month or more. It is scary. I have the classic symptoms: I can t move, can t speak, I can sometimes open one eye a little bit and see a blur of my room. It is terrifying and I don t know what to do. I have talked to my family about it a couple times, telling them that if I happen to look like I am trying to speak or move than to sit me up; I actually just had another episode of sleep paralysis in the living room while I was sleeping on the couch. I could hear the t.v and the words and everyone; I hallucinated thinking and seeing that I was on my laptop and had my headset on to my xbox. It took me forever to move; but when I can move it is like my body clicks and I am fine. But it is so scary. When I was functional I looked up at my mom and said; Did you not hear me trying to call for you? and she said I looked like I was sound asleep and perfectly still. I am hating this. Please, help me.
Asked On : Thu, 6 Dec 2012
Answers:  1 Views:  46
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Emergency Medicine Specialist 's  Response
Hello and welcome to Healthcare Magic.

Sleep paralysis can be a disturbing and frightening experience. It is common in people who are sleep-deprived or have irregular sleep habits. Other causes can include:
- Mental conditions such as stress or bipolar disorder
- Sleeping on the back
- Other sleep problems such as narcolepsy or nighttime leg cramps
- Use of certain medications
- Substance abuse

So, the first step in controlling your symptoms is ensuring proper sleep hygiene:
- Fix a specific bedtime and an awakening time. Do not allow bedtime and awakening time to drift.
- Avoid napping during the day.
- Avoid coffee, tea or any caffeinated drinks or alcohol 4 hours before bedtime.
- Avoid heavy, spicy, or sugary foods for dinner. Have a gap of at least 1 hour between dinner and bedtime.
- Exercise regularly, preferably in the early evening, at least 4 hours before bedtime.
- Set up a comfortable environment which is dark, quiet and disturbance-free. Block out all distracting noise, and eliminate as much light as possible.

When this problem is very severe or troublesome, a short duration of medication may be beneficial. Antidepressant medication, such as a tricyclic antidepressants, typically clomipramine has been found effective.

Best wishes,
Dr. Sheeba Stephen
Answered: Thu, 6 Dec 2012
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