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S/O: Night Terrors

Posted by on May. 21, 2011 at 1:43 AM
  • 12 Replies
I'm just curious. We haven't had them, but I know nothing and like to be prepared.

What exactly are they? What age do they commonly begin/end? What are believed triggers, if any? Has your lo had them? What can you do in the moment to help calm them? Thanks!
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by on May. 21, 2011 at 1:43 AM
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Replies (1-10):
bcbmami
by on May. 21, 2011 at 1:45 AM
BUMP!
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TTC2Long
by on May. 21, 2011 at 3:11 PM
Bumpity bump!
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megandwade
by on May. 21, 2011 at 3:35 PM

My 6 year old nephew has them. They say they are hereditary. His father also had them.

They are just bad dreams that must be really vivid. They usually wake him screaming/crying and he has a hard time getting back to sleep after of course. They are usually caused by anything that scares him. Scary movies or things he is worried about. Lately they have been about bees because he is afraid of the bees that are outside near his swing set.

TTC2Long
by on May. 22, 2011 at 1:19 PM
I see. And how long does it take to settle him? What's the difference between nt and just being upset from having a bad dream?

Quoting megandwade:

My 6 year old nephew has them. They say they are hereditary. His father also had them.


They are just bad dreams that must be really vivid. They usually wake him screaming/crying and he has a hard time getting back to sleep after of course. They are usually caused by anything that scares him. Scary movies or things he is worried about. Lately they have been about bees because he is afraid of the bees that are outside near his swing set.

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Starleet
by on May. 22, 2011 at 8:03 PM

bump

Honeybun09
by on May. 22, 2011 at 8:04 PM

My daughter suffered from them for only a year thankfully.

Definition

Night terrors are a sleep disorder in which a person quickly awakens from sleep in a terrified state.

Alternative Names

Pavor nocturnus; Sleep terror disorder

Causes, incidence, and risk factors

Night terrors (sleep terrors) occur during deep sleep, usually during the first third of the night. The cause is unknown but night terrors may be triggered by fever, lack of sleep, or periods of emotional tension, stress, or conflict.

In contrast, nightmares are more common in the early morning. They may occur after someone watches frightening movies/TV shows or has an emotional experience. A person may remember the details of a dream upon awakening, and will not be disoriented after the episode.

Night terrors are most common in boys ages 5 - 7, although they also can occur in girls. They are fairly common in children ages 3 - 7, and much less common after that. Night terrors may run in families. They can occur in adults, especially with emotional tension and/or the use of alcohol.

Symptoms

Night terrors are most common during the first third of the night, often between midnight and 2 a.m.

  • Children often scream and are very frightened and confused. They thrash around violently and are often not aware of their surroundings.
  • You may be unable to talk to, comfort, or fully awaken a child who is having a night terror.
  • The child may be sweating, breathing very fast (hyperventilating), have a fast heart rate, and dilated pupils.
  • The spell may last 10 - 20 minutes, then normal sleep returns.

Most children are unable to explain what happened the next morning. There is often no memory of the event when they awaken the next day.

Children with night terrors may also sleep walk.

Signs and tests

In many cases, no further examination or testing is needed. If the night terror is severe or prolonged, the child may need a psychological evaluation.

Treatment

In many cases, a child who has a night terror only needs comfort and reassurance. Psychotherapy or counseling may be appropriate in some cases. Benzodiazepine medications (such as diazepam) used at bedtime will often reduce night terrors; however, medication is rarely recommended to treat this disorder.


Read more: http://www.healthline.com/adamcontent/night-terror#ixzz1N84sIagQ
Healthline.com - Connect to Better Health

Expectations (prognosis)

Most children outgrow night terrors in a short period of time. They don't usually remember the event. Stress reduction and/or psychotherapy may be helpful for night terror in adults.

Complications

Calling your health care provider

Call for an appointment with your health care provider if:

  • The night terrors are persistent or frequent
  • They occur often enough to regularly disrupt sleep
  • Other symptoms occur with the night terror
  • The night terror causes, or almost causes, injuries

Prevention

Minimizing stress or using coping mechanisms may reduce night terrors. The number of episodes usually decreases after age 10.

References

Owens JA. Sleep medicine: In: Kliegman RM, Behrman RE, Jenson HB, Stanton BF, eds. Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics. 18th ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Saunders Elsevier; 2007: chap 18.


Read more: http://www.healthline.com/adamcontent/night-terror/2#ixzz1N84vdf3w
Healthline.com - Connect to Better Health




mommy2xp
by on May. 22, 2011 at 8:35 PM

 I'm not sure, we've never dealt with them

megandwade
by on May. 22, 2011 at 9:37 PM

I think Honeybuns post summed it up pretty well! I know he usually is up most of the night after he has one. I think it must be way more vivid than a usual bad dream & I think it definately has alot to do with stress.

Quoting TTC2Long:

I see. And how long does it take to settle him? What's the difference between nt and just being upset from having a bad dream?

Quoting megandwade:

My 6 year old nephew has them. They say they are hereditary. His father also had them.


They are just bad dreams that must be really vivid. They usually wake him screaming/crying and he has a hard time getting back to sleep after of course. They are usually caused by anything that scares him. Scary movies or things he is worried about. Lately they have been about bees because he is afraid of the bees that are outside near his swing set.


athenaheim
by on May. 22, 2011 at 9:40 PM
My ds has been diagnosed with them since age two. Just remember NEVER EVER wake up the person having the night terrors. My son would wake up screaming in the middle of the night. the only thing u can do is be there for them. Comfort them when u can.
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AmbreG.
by on May. 22, 2011 at 9:53 PM

my daughter went thru them at around 2 years old. they are having a nightmare and seem awake oftentimes but are not really awake. usually you have to ride it out. trying to wake them usually doesn't help and can make it worse. sometimes turning on the lights or tv would settle my daughter but usually it faded on it's own. it's hard to watch but i know from experience trying to help them settle down doesn't usually work. in my daughter's case, i wondered if too much stimulation before bedtime was the cause. by that i mean mostly the tv. she didn't really watch the tv, but she would be in the living room and it would be on. we started making sure that whatever was on then wasn't loud or filled with a lot of action and was more relaxing. her terrors stopped almost immediately once we did that. good luck

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