My Family Rants

Night Terrors

Posted on: December 7, 2008

Two nights this week my six year old son has had what I believe to be “Night Terrors”.

Shortly after falling to sleep, I heard him crying in fear, obviously not awake.  He was trembling in fear, and though he eyes were open he was not really focusing on anything.  Was a pretty scarry experience for me too.  He was crying and saying “mommy”??.  He only really calms down when I get him back into his bed and back to sleep.

When he was a toddler he used to get these, and I had hoped he had grown out of it.

WHAT IS A NIGHT TERROR?:

From Wikipedia;

A night terror, also known as pavor nocturnus, is a parasomnia disorder characterized by extreme terror and a temporary inability to regain full consciousness. The subject wakes abruptly from slow-wave sleep, with waking usually accompanied by gasping, moaning, or screaming. It is often impossible to fully awaken the person, and after the episode the subject normally settles back to sleep without waking. A night terror can rarely be recalled by the subject. They typically occur during non-rapid eye movement sleep.

Though there are a multitude of triggers, emotional stress during the previous day and a high fever are thought to precipitate most episodes

I worry that emotional stress causes his night terrors.  For the most part he is a very well adjusted young man, all things considered that he has to deal with in his life.  I just hope these recent episodes are not an indication of something stressing him out either at his dad’s house or at school 😦

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1 Response to "Night Terrors"

my oldest had night terrors. We went through a 6 week period where we had to wake her every night (took her to the bathroom to potty) about 30 minutes before they typically happened. By resetting her sleep she seemed to miss that place where she would go into terror mode.

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