hi, over the past six months on waking or just about to fall asleep, I have seen the figure of an old man by my bed. Because I feel like i'm awake and looking at my own room and know he shouldn't be there it always makes me scream so hard my throat hurts the next day. When I scream the vision fades slowly. My partner has been very understanding but I keep waking him with the screaming, and then the crying because it is very frightening. What can I do to prevent this?
You might be experiencing what we refer to as Hypnagogic (transition to sleep) and Hypnopompic (transition to wakefulness) Hallucination. These are not uncommon. Some individuals also experience paralysis of their limbs while seeing images in the room. The sleep mechanism induces a physiological paralysis of the muscles during the stages of dreaming, so as to prevent body movements from happening. The transition periods between wakefulness and sleep can sometimes lead to the mind being awake for a while but the body paralyzed. You may not be experience the paralysis and so you can ignore this description of the paralysis. But seeing images is part of the hypnagogic and hypnopompic hallucination. You may consult your GP about this and perhaps get a sleep study done to find out more about your sleep architecture.
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