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sleep paralysis: causes, symptoms and it's concept in Islam.

What is sleep paralysis?

Sleep paralysis is a condition where you are temporarily paralysed while waking up or falling asleep, meaning you may be unable to move or speak. Back in 2011, a review found that 7.6% of the world’s population will experience at least one episode in their lifetime. Although this is particularly frightening, it’s not harmful to your health.

Although we’ve briefly looked at the definition, it’s important to understand the science behind it. Overnight, our brain goes through several different sleep cycles, all important stages of sleep in order for the brain to rest, recover and prepare for the next day. One of these stages is REM sleep, otherwise known as Rapid Eye Movement sleep or deep sleep. During this phase, our brains send our bodies into complete paralysis in order to rest. That’s why this condition is often referred to as The Demon of the Bedroom.
sleep paralysis: causes, symptoms and it's concept in Islam.
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However, things can go wrong when we are in the deep sleep stage. During this period of paralysis, you can wake up, whilst still being stuck in REM sleep. This means that you can see your surroundings but are completely unable to move a muscle. The person experiencing sleep paralysis may or may not hallucinate whilst ‘stuck’ in their own bodies due to the terrifying nature of the experience.

Describing the sleep disorder, Dr Michael Breus says: ‘Most patients say the same thing to describe sleep paralysis: that it feels like you woke up dead. You know that your mind is awake and your body is not — so you’re trapped, essentially’.

An episode will typically last a few seconds until your body ‘wakes up’, however in worst case scenarios, it can last a few minutes.

What Causes Sleep Paralysis?

One explanation of sleep paralysis is that it’s caused by disrupted REM sleep: REM sleep typically induces total muscle atonia which prevents sleepers from acting out their dreams. Sleep deprivation and genetics are the major causes of sleep paralysis, and this condition has also been linked to disorder

s such as migraines, narcolepsy, obstructive sleep apnea, and anxiety disorders. It is associated with excessive daytime sleepiness and being sleep deprived. When a person sleeps in a fixed supine position, it increases the likelihood of them experiencing sleep paralysis. In addition, it is related to REM atonia, which is the paralysis that occurs as a natural part of REM sleep. Sleep paralysis is also one of the symptoms of narcolepsy.

The Symptoms of Sleep Paralysis

When people fall asleep, their brain normally causes the muscles to relax. This stillness of the muscles is called “atonia.” With sleep paralysis, however, atonia happens when people are not yet asleep, or when they’re just waking up. When people experience sleep paralysis, they may experience frightening symptoms, such as:

✓Being unable to move their arms, legs, head, or body. 
✓Having episodes of this temporary paralysis that last up to a few minutes. 
✓Feeling anxious or afraid.
✓Hallucinating or seeing, hearing, or feeling things that aren’t there.

Sleep paralysis often goes along with other sleep disorders, such as narcolepsy. It may be a result of a medical condition, the use of certain drugs or medications, or an underlying mental health disorder.

What Islam says about Sleep paralysis

This is a special Jin called "Al-kaboos" that attacks you in your sleep. The symptoms of the attack are when a person is asleep and imagines something heavy pressing upon their chest, squeezing them and constricting their breathing, hence they cannot speak or move, and they are almost suffocated because of the obstruction of their airways. When the Jin goes away, you wake up immediately in a panic gasping for air. Western scientists call this phenomenon "Sleep Paralysis" but Islam has taught us it is, in fact, a Jin that attacks during people's sleep.
So how do we protect our selves from being attacked by this Jin? We follow the Sunnan of how our prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) Slept.
1. Sleep in a state of Wudu.
2. Make sure to have prayed all you fard Salah before going to sleep.
3. Before climbing into your bed, dust the bed thrice.
4. Recite Subhanallah 33 times, Alhamdulilah 33times and Allahu Akbar 34 times.
5. Read Ayat Al Kursi
6. Read the 3 Kuls ( Surat Al Ikhals, Al Falaq & An Nas).
7. (If possible In-sha-Allah) Read surat Al Mulk.
8. Sleeping on your right-hand side.


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