Prognosis of nightmare disorder is positive. People with nightmare disorder can manage the symptoms by making a few changes in their lifestyle. These changes allow the person to have good sleep and help the children suffering from such disorder.
A nightmare is a type of dream which causes disturbance during sleep. A nightmares dream is associated with negative feelings, scary objects, and anxiety. This type of disease is common in children but usually occurs at any age. Nightmare is a common condition but nightmare disorder is a rare condition. Nightmare disorder occurs when nightmare cause sleep deprivation, the patient feels fear of going on bed and day time functions gets significantly affected because of poor night sleep. Nightmare disorder usually occurs during REM (rapid eye movement) sleep because during REM sleep most of the dreams take place. The patient feels nightmares during the earlier hour of morning.1
Prognosis For Nightmare Disorder
The prognosis is good for nightmares disorders. People with nightmare disorder can easily overcome this condition by proper counseling and with a suitable treatment strategy. This is a no real concern of health and the disease generally does not affect the vital organs of the body. Usually, nightmare disorder causes interference with the sleep which may affect the day-time activities. Sleep deprivation reduces the energy level of the patient and people left with poor concentration. A nightmare disorder may cure the patient’s age. Exercise plays an important role in the management of nightmare disorder along with proper management therapy. A person who adds exercise in their daily routine has less frequent nightmares compared to people who do not do any physical activity.2
Lifestyle Changes For Nightmare Disorder
Apart from conventional therapy for the treatment of nightmare disorder, various lifestyle changes also play an important role in managing the symptoms of nightmare disorder. Following lifestyle changes would have a positive effect on children suffering from nightmare disorder:
Do Some Relaxing Activities Before Bedtime: For good sleep, you can do some relaxing activities such as reading books, take a bath with warm water and solve puzzles.
Provide Comfort Measure: For good and secure sleep, provide some comfort and favorite stuff to your children such as a favorite blanket and other favorite things.
Use A Night Light: Keep a light in your child’s room. If your child wakes up at midnight then light provides them comfort prevents any panic.
Some Activities For Stress: If a nightmare is caused by anxiety and depression then do some activities to getting relief from stress like deep breathing.
Talk With Your Child About Their Dreams: Discuss with your child about dreams which can disturb the sleep. Know about some points such as who comes in dreams, who scares him or her, and what happens in their dreams. Tell your child that a nightmare is not real it is only imagination and the nightmare would not hurt them.
When nightmare disorder occurs in an adult, following lifestyle changes may provide relief:
Do Some Physical Activities: Physical activities improve the quality of sleep and also help prolonged sleep. Physical activities such as exercise help in reducing stress and may boost your sleep. Exercise in early morning and afternoon may increase your body temperature which can trigger your sleep a few hours later.2
Avoid Foods: Avoid some foods before bedtimes such as sugary foods, fatty foods, spicy foods, and caffeine. These all food triggers your nightmares so do not take these before bedtime.3
Food Consumption: Consume food that is rich in tryptophan, serotonin, and melatonin such as dairy products, honey, almonds, and oats. These all increase sleep-promoting hormones which are required for a complete sleep.
People with nightmare disorder can easily be treated with various conventional as well as other techniques such as lifestyle changes. Lifestyle changes include exercise, avoiding and consuming certain foods, improving sleep environment and performing mind relaxing activities.
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