Nightmares and the Scary Side of Sleep

Have you ever awoken in the middle of the night to the feeling of sheer terror? Add to that the inability to move, and no sound comes out as you scream for help. If this terrifying scenario rings a bell, then you may be among the 5-40% of people who suffer from sleep paralysis, a condition where the sleep area of the brain that usually causes the body to relax occurs while you're awake. This phenomena is so historically frightening that it was once thought to be caused by demons pinning their victims down, a theory documented throughout history in some pretty creepy art. (You may regret reading this before bedtime...).

Sleep paralysis isn't the only barrier to snoozing on cloud nine. Nightmares, phobias and sleepwalking are all examples of how the necessary act of sleeping can go wrong. Check out these videos to explore the scary, yet fascinating world of the dark side of sleep and dreams.

Written by Curiosity Staff May 19, 2014

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