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Night terrors?

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  • Night terrors?

    The past few years I've been getting terrible night terrors. During the worst spouts I can get them more than once nightly. I see things in the bedroom and usually sit up in a panic. Thankfully, I don't walk!! While it's very scary for me, I'm especially concerned about my husband since it's negatively affecting his quality of sleep too.

    Anyway, this is not something isolated to the Primal diet, but it does get much worse, especially during the first 1- 2 weeks or so.

    I started taking fish oil supplements last year and that actually seemed to help a little bit. I also tried taking magnesium, drinking lots of water, eating something small before bed, using a SAD lamp in the morning when I wake up, not watching tv or surfing the net before bedtime, meditating.

    But, I'm about at my wit's end with it. I was wondering if anyone else had a similar experience or had any ideas about what else I could try?

  • #2

    It seems that you are covering every aspect of the physical contributions. Maybe opening an account at one of the online journal sites (with a discreet moniker), and never divulging details that could identify you, would give you another outlet for whatever goes on in your head. It's a way to tap into your subconscious mind. I have figured out so many buried conflicts with journaling.

    Good luck!


    • #3
      Thanks, Debbie! And so fast too, wow. I appreciate it.

      I started journaling a few months ago actually. I love that idea although I have the impression that it's something physical rather than psychological (as if there is really a difference!).


      • #4

        This isn't going to be much help, but I had them regularly as a child. They just suddenly went away when I was 11 or 12.
        Now, the only time I have a problem is when I take anything containing pseudoephedrine before bed

        I think it IS something physical---I just don't know exactly what it is. But I do understand how awful it feels.


        • #5
          Is night terror the same as the sleep paralysis thing?

          I heard that our body's are paralysed for certain parts of the sleep cycle so we don't act out our dreams (THAT could be funny) and sometimes you wake up in terror because you are awake but your body can't move and your body freaks out. Is that the same thing?

          Sounds pretty awful - I hope the journaling works.


          • #6
            i suffer from this ... same "terror" or dream comes around about once every 3-4 months ... cant tell why it happens ie cant isolate the stressor ... so i empathise if yr getting them frequently cos its no fun at all


            • #7
              I had them when I was young too. I want to see where this goes.


              • #8
                How's your vitamin D? Cillakat would know MUCH more than me on the topic, but IIRC, vitamin has so much to do with the brain and mood and mental stuff that it's possible that could be playing a part. I could be completely full of s***, but that route might be worth a shot.
                Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, steak in one hand, chocolate in the other, yelling "Holy F***, What a Ride!"
                My Latest Journal


                • #9
                  I used to get these too. For me though they would go one of two ways:

                  a) I would feel someone in my room, or immediately around me and I couldn’t move to check but I had my eyes open, or at least partially open, but my body was too tired it seemed or just unable to move. It was scary but eventually I would fall back asleep.

                  b) With my eyes closed and in a semi-sleep I would feel like something scary was about to happen in my dream, to give an example, let’s say I was walking (in my dream) and I saw a dog in the distance, I would KNOW that this dog was about to do something scary (attack, or morph into something else) and I would just “brace” myself for it. Typically the cause of my fear (the dog in this example) would approach and get bigger up until the point where I just opened my eyes and was somewhat paralyzed. This eventually happened very VERY often.

                  They both haven’t happened in many months, but one thing I noticed that seemed to trigger these was… NAPS.

                  If I took a nap, chances were I would have that type of dream/terror, either during the nap or at night when I went to sleep. I haven’t taken a nap in a very long time, unless I passed out watching tv which I don’t consider the same.

                  Other than that I can’t say what else played a part in it, I started eating better which could have helped but you’re already doing that if you’re here. Do you nap often? Maybe that could be it… ? I wish I could be more help. They really can be quite terrifying.

                  Edit: I can't remember exactly WHEN they stopped, I just sort of realized they had stopped. I started dosing Vitamin D maybe two months ago so in my experience I don't think fish oil or D had much to do with it but for general health it's wise to dose both.
                  I used to seriously post here, now I prefer to troll.


                  • #10
                    I have night terrors sometimes as well. The feeling that your trying to run from something, and you can't move fast enough! or Knowing something is going to happen, and all of a sudden you're awake! I'm not sure what causes this either.

                    As a side note: With your journal, if you think something could be made out of it, you should explore it. Stephenie Meyer made her Twilight Series out of a dream she had, and now she's loaded! Don't forget the one who suggested this to you when you make it big!!!


                    • #11
                      My nasty night terrors come and go, dependent on the stress and such going in my life. They always take the same form: Some scary is happening (usually, I'm about to be killed in a way that could easily be avoided in real life) and I open my mouth to scream for help and nothing comes out. My vocal cords just lock down. I can't even breathe. I jolt awake and pant for a few minutes, then either go back to sleep next to my husband or go find something to keep me occupied until the dream loses it's grip.
                      In my case, they usually go away when I bring my stress down to a sane level. Back when my garndmother was dying from cancer right as I got laid off from work, I had them nearly nightly, occasionally multiple times a night.
                      Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, steak in one hand, chocolate in the other, yelling "Holy F***, What a Ride!"
                      My Latest Journal


                      • #12
                        Wow, how helpful are all of you?! Thank you!

                        To answer your questions:

                        -It is like sleep paralysis, but I move around. The typical thing that happens is that I see a shadow or something more physical on the wall or the floor and then I sit up with my eyes wide open and wake my hubby up by calling to him to "look!". And when he doesn't believe me, I get annoyed and try to convince him.

                        -I take vitamin D and try to go out every day. I do live in the Pacific NW though so it's entirely possible that I'm lacking. However, I had the terrors when I lived in Spain prior to the last two years and I'd say I had plenty of sun there. :P

                        -I very rarely nap. They tend to make me feel groggy, so it's rare that I'll have one.

                        I probably should have stated this more clearly in my first post, but the thing that's so weird to me is how much worse they get when I'm going Primal. Like, I'll get them once or twice per month if I'm off the diet, but when I go on, I can get them up to 4 times nightly for the first two weeks or so and then about 3 times weekly after that.

                        So, the only things that have occurred to me is that it has something to do with my blood sugar levels? Or the detox?


                        • #13
                          It's possible that it's a symptom of YOUR carb flu, it affects everyone differently. Is trying to eat right stressing yuo out? Are you still arguing with yourself over this aspect or that? Those may have a hand in them as well (mental stress.)
                          Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, steak in one hand, chocolate in the other, yelling "Holy F***, What a Ride!"
                          My Latest Journal


                          • #14
                            Well, also you have to acknowledge that what you're seeing isn't real, or isn't really there, trust me I thought that I wasn't alone because it's such a real experience but you have to keep in mind that there really is nothing there. So, waking up your husband isn't helping at all, except maybe to calm you down, but I could see how that would wear on him if you're doing it all the time.

                            Next time it happens try to just ignore it as hard as you can, I used to try and reverse it but it was too powerful of a though/fixation and sometimes I felt I worsened it.

                            I wonder if it's a deficiency or an abundance of some type of chemical or nutrient or something. I really wish I could pin point what made it stop but sadly I cannot...
                            I used to seriously post here, now I prefer to troll.


                            • #15
                              @naiadknight - The diet doesn't stress me out too much. Actually, I find it a relief because it gives me more time and less to worry about. I do run my own business and I'll call that stressful. Although, the first 4 years in business, I didn't get the night terrors and I think they were more stressful than the last 4 (when the night terrors started)

                              @iniQuity - Yeah, that's the thing. Every night I tell myself to remember that they aren't real because I really don't want to wake up my husband. But when I'm in that state, I'm still half asleep and irrational and it doesn't occur to me that it's possibly not real. After a moment, I sometimes wake up and realize I'm dreaming, but that's usually after I've already sat up and woke him up.

                              I was thinking about seeing if I could learn how to do lucid dreaming though. I was thinking, that if I could learn to control my dreams, then maybe I'd also be able to control the night terrors.