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Husband has violent night terrors
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Husband has violent night terrors

My 26 year old husband has violent night terrors.  He had expereinced 1 in 4 years, but recently has had about one per month.  He jumps out of bed screaming and runs frantically at full speed.  He also jumps erratically on or over the bed.  I have been told to leave him alone as these happen, but I find it difficult.  What do I/we need to do to get him the help he needs.  We are still relatively newly wed and have not been sleeping in the same room. How do I help him and help myself to get around this?
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Avatar_n_tn
Hi,

The condition which your husband has is known as 'REM sleep behaviour disorder'. Its a behavioral disorder during sleep, which primarily affect men of middle age, many of whom have a history of prior neurologic disease(e.g., Guillain-Barre syndrome, dementia, subarachnoid hemorrhage).
The other condition, which requires to be ruled out is nocturnal seizures. Polysomnography can help in making this diagnosis.
Treatment with drugs like clonazepam and tricyclic antidepressants has been successful. These are priscription (prescription) only drugs and should be taken only after consultation with a doctor.
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My 34 year old boyfriend has the same problem and has not been diagnosed, but it sounds like RBD (REM Behavior Disorder). He has vivid dreams and his body acts out whatever he is dreaming about. The unfortunate part of this problem is that it is very dangerous (both to himself and to me). He has tried to choke me twice in his sleep and frequently runs down the stairs and out of the house. If I try to wake him up, he reacts violently (because he is still dreaming). So, now he is sleeping on the couch almost every night. All of the resources say that people with this problem need to sleep alone and away from dangerous objects, like knives, pointy furniture, and stairs.

They can prescribe drugs to help, but my boyfriend has found no relief with the drugs. He tends to have more episodes when he is stressed out, when we have a fight, when he is sad, when he drinks alcohol, or, ironically, when we have had sex :(   I would look up RBD and have your boyfriend see a sleep  specialist. You have to be patient and accepting because he has no control over this. Good luck
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Avatar_n_tn
Hi,
Please consult a neurologist for treatment and also to rule out parkinson's, dementia, and multiple system atrophy since RBD symptoms can be the first manifestations of these conditions. Also Clonazepam has been tried with success so you can try it out after consulting your neurologist.
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Avatar_n_tn
HI i was just reading through the forum as i suffer really bad night terrors and have done for years.i came across a message you gave to jess331 on the 11/12/07 and it made me a little uneasy to read the part about the subarachnoid hemmorage as my sister died of one this year really sudden at the age of 29.
maybe im being just a little paranoid and im sorry to ask but is it in someway linked.
could you explain a little to me about it.
thanks x
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