Nightmares are negative feeling during sleep that results in fear and anxiety. Scary dreams make people awaken after sleep and think nonstop about the dreams and get to the peak of fear. This always ends up in mental stress and severe health problems. Check out more about the nightmare disorder.
Nightmares mostly occur in children from age three to six but also affect adults. It is said to be during the teens, girls experience nightmares more often than boys.
Symptoms of nightmares
Mostly, people experience nightmares during the second half of their sleep. It may be often or rarely, once or many times during sleep. Resulting in difficulty sleeping.
- fatigue or low energy
- Fear of dark
- Not being social with friends and family
- Fear of sleep
- Unstoppable thinking of the dreams
Parents or other caregivers may experience significant sleep disturbance and distress if they have a child with a nightmare disorder.
Parasomnia, a sort of sleep condition that comprises unpleasant experiences that happen as you’re falling asleep, while you’re asleep, or as you’re waking up, is what medical professionals refer to as a nightmare problem. Rapid eye movement (REM) sleep is the stage of sleep when nightmares typically happen.
Risk factors of nightmare disorder
- Excessive daytime sleepiness can cause issues at work or school or trouble concentrating on daily duties like driving.
- Mood issues, such as despair or anxiety brought on by persistently bothersome dreams.
- Fear of having another nightmare keeps you from going to sleep or getting into bed.
- Thoughts of suicide attempts.
If you frequently have nightmares and horrible dreams, you probably want to know how to identify their root cause and whether there are any possible remedies. If nightmares are not frequent, cause significant anxiety, or make it difficult to fall asleep again, they are not considered a disorder that requires treatment. The good news is that there are efficient treatment alternatives, such as medication and therapy.
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
People with the condition Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) often experience trouble sleeping. They usually re-experience the dreams they overgo either in the daytime or at night time.
Medication for nightmares in adults
What is the best medication for nightmares? Prazosin is a medicine that is effectively used for nightmare treatment. Additionally, it is used in many therapies such as
- Relaxation techniques
- Lucid dreaming
Prazosin medication should be avoided by the following categories of people.,
- People who are already taking other medications
- Those who have done cataract surgery
- Can be used with caution if experiencing low blood pressure
Other medications are also used for the treatment: selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) used to treat anxiety and depression, such as
- Citalopram (Celexa)
- Fluoxetine (Prozac)
- Paroxetine (Paxil)
- Sertraline (Zoloft)
Solution for nightmares
For some severe cases, it is necessary to do a polysomnogram. Sleep apnea, restless leg syndrome (RLS), and other sleep disorders can be identified with the use of a polysomnogram, also known as a sleep study. Typically, patients spend the night in a sleep lab at a hospital or an outpatient sleep clinic while electrodes are affixed to their bodies to track their breathing, movement, and brain waves.