Sleep Paralysis And Anxiety Disorders Essay

1264 Words Dec 9th, 2016 6 Pages
Sleep Paralysis and Anxiety Disorders Studies have suggested that individuals who suffer from an anxiety disorder are more likely to experience isolated sleep paralysis. Sleep paralysis is the inability to make voluntary movements during the onset of sleep called hypnagogic sleep paralysis or upon awakening called hypnopompic sleep paralysis. During sleep, the body alternates between REM (rapid eye movement) and NREM (non-rapid eye movement). During REM sleep, the body goes into a state of paralysis to keep the person from acting out their dreams. A person experiences sleep paralysis when they become aware before the end of the REM cycle, therefore experiencing the inability to move or talk and often experiencing hallucinations. According to a study by Muzur, Pace-Schott, & Hobson (2002), the prefrontal cortex shows the greatest change from waking to sleep. The question is whether cortical functioning in patients with an anxiety disorder shows dysfunction in any of the areas that are responsible for REM sleep. Firstly, there has been prior research suggesting a link between isolated sleep paralysis and panic disorders. A study by Otto, Simon, Powers, Hinton, Zalta, & Pollack (2005) aimed to distinguish the rates of isolated sleep paralysis among those with panic disorder, social anxiety disorder, and generalized anxiety disorder (GAD). Sixty-one individuals between the ages of 30 and 56 took part in the study with 43% being women. Participants were…

Related Documents