What is the actual cause of sleep paralysis?

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It is defined as the inability to perform voluntary movements or speak at sleep onset or on awakening. Sleep paralysis represents a dissociated state in which REM sleep atonia coexists with full consideration of wakefulness.

It usually occurs at one of the two times. Hypnagogic or predormital sleep paralysis occurs while falling asleepHypnopompic or postdormital sleep paralysis occurs while waking up from sleep.


Some of the reasons for which it occurs:-

  • Lack of sleep
  • Hampering the sleep schedule
  • Taking Mental strain
  • Sleeping on the back
  • Having other sleep disorder like narcolepsy or leg cramps during sleep
  • Medication for ADHD (Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder) causes sleep paralysis
  • Addiction to drugs and alcohol also causes sleep paralysis.

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