Sleep Paralysis Symptoms | Sleep Paralysis Diagnosis | Symptoms of Sleep Paralysis

Sleep Paralysis Symptoms

Sleep paralysis is most often associated with narcolepsy, a neurological condition in which the person has uncontrollable naps.

However, there are many people who experience sleep paralysis without having signs of narcolepsy. Sometimes it runs in families.

The sleep paralysis symptoms include sensations of smells, levitation, paralysis, noises, terror, and images of frightening intruders. Once considered very rare, about half of all people are now believed to experience sleep paralysis sometime during their life.

The Symptoms of Sleep Paralysis include:

  1. Presence of brief episodes of partial or complete skeletal muscle paralysis
  2. Happens before falling asleep or just after waking up
  3. Episodes can be associated with hypnagogic hallucinations or dream-like mentation (act or use of the brain).
  4. A complaint of inability to move the trunk or limbs at sleep onset or upon awakening
  5. Inability to move or speak for 30 seconds - 3 minutes
  6. Can be hereditary
  7. Can be brought on by stress

Sleep paralysis diagnosis

The sleep paralysis diagnosis can be done with polysomnography test. Polysomnography (a sleep recording) shows at least one of the following:

  • A sleep onset REM period
  • Dissociated REM sleep
  • Suppression of skeletal muscle tone


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