Baby Night Terrors, What Are They?

April Peveteaux
17

baby bedI I just met someone who told me when her son was a baby he used to have night terrors. Poor little guy!

I actually have something similar to night terrors, so I wondered if a baby could possibly be having that intense of a nighttime experience, and if so -- why?

Life stress is mentioned as a possible cause, but how many 1-year-olds are stressed? Fever, medication, and sleep-deprivation are other causes, which seem possible, at times, for a baby.

I searched Dr. Google and found out what exactly a night terror is, at least according to WebMD.

Night terrors are serious sleep disruptions that happen during deep sleep. Oftentimes a night terror is identified by the fact that a child is screaming, but he can't be woken up. Scary!

Like any sleep disorder, it's necessary to recognize and diagnose so you can work toward eliminating it. But there's no real "cure" for night terrors, which rarely occur in children under the age of 3, but it does happen.

My fellow party-goer was certainly convinced her baby was having them. In fact, she'd wake up her 17-month-old before she felt he was hitting REM sleep to avoid the cycle, as this was becoming a nightly occurrence she could set her clock by.

Waking up your child is something WebMD suggests you do, as night terrors happen, on average, 90 minutes after falling asleep. She said it worked, and eventually he grew out of that particularly frightening stage.

Has your baby ever had a night terror? What did you do?

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