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10 Terrifying Things That Can Happen To You Whilst Sleeping

Beware - you may never want to shut your eyes again!

BBC

Everyone loves to sleep, whether it's a quick power nap in the afternoon or a long night in bed with you and the comfy covers. But what really happens to us whilst we lie in the subconscious?

Some people do not have regular sleep and can suffer in the extreme, from paralysis to screaming at visions that aren't even there as their dreams come to life in front of their eyes. Sleep clinics across the world welcome hundreds of new patients every day, as studies are taken in to why and what really happens to those who can't seem to keep still or sleep in silence.

But what are the most scary things to happen when we sleep? What could cause serious damage and make a sufferer reach out for medical or psychological help?

Here are the top 10 most terrifying things to happen to you whilst you sleep, and how they can happen.

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10. Sleep Paralysis

Henry Fuseli, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

The most terrifying experience to happen to you whilst still asleep is the commonly named form of sleep paralysis. This is exactly what it sounds like - during their sleep cycle, the sufferer's brain will wake up but their body will stay asleep, causing the feeling that they cannot move.

Often, the sleeper will feel an intense pressure on their chest as they attempt to move and breathe at a normal pace. The sensation of paralysis can feel endless, sometimes accompanied by visions around the room or on top of them.

Many sufferers of sleep paralysis witness a demon or dark figure pushing down on to them. Some conspiracy theorists believe that the visions are real, and are creatures of the afterlife attempting to take you down to Hell.

This image of sleep paralysis can be traced back 1781, with Henry Fuseli's painting 'The Nightmare', in which a small devil figure sits on a sleeping woman's chest. The meaning of the painting shows obsession and control over the innocent, as they cannot move and are forced to see the demon above them.

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