Sleep Disorders

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Sleep Disorder, Driving you Mad

Sleep and Disease

  • Stroke and asthma attacks are more common during the night and in the early morning, probably because of changes in hormones, heart rate, and other associated with sleep.
  • Neurons that control sleep interact closely with the immune system. As anyone who has had the  flu  knows,  infectious  diseases  make  us  sleepy.  The probable  reason  is  that chemicals  called  cytokenisis,  produced  by  the body’s  cells  while  we  are  fighting  an infection,  are  powerful  sleep- inducing  chemicals.  Sleep  may  help  the  body  conserve energy and other resources that the body needs to overcome infection.
  • Sleep  problems  are  common  in  many  other  disorders  as  well,  inducing Alzheimer’s disease, stroke, and cancer. In some cases, however, these problems may be due not to the disease itself but to the drugs used to treat the disease.
  • Many people suffer from undiagnosed and untreated sleep disorders that leave them to struggle through the day feeling unmotivated and exhausted.

Nightmares and Night Terrors

  • A nightmare is a frightening dream that awakens a dreamer from REM sleep.
  • A night terror is characterized by sudden arousal from sleep and intense fear. Night terrors are accompanied by a number of psychological reactions, such as rapid heart rate and breathing, loud screams, heavy perspiration, and movement.

Dreams as Wish Fulfillment

  • Sigmund Freud thought that the reason we dream is wish fulfillment. Wish fulfillment is Freud’s concept of dreaming as an unconscious attempt to fulfill needs (especially for sex and aggression) that cannot be expressed, or that go ungratified, while awake.
  • Manifest content in Freud’s view, the dream’s surface content, which contains symbols that distort and disguise the dream’s true meaning.
  • Latent content in Freud’s views, the dream’s hidden content; it’s unconscious meaning.
  • Subconscious Cognitive Processing
    • Cognitive theory of dreaming proposes that dreaming can be understood by relying on the same cognitive processes that are used in studying the waking mind.
  • Finding Logic in Random Brain Activity
    • Activation-synthesis theory states that dreaming occurs when the cerebral cortex synthesizes neural signals emanating from activity in the lower part of the brain.


  • Hypnosis is a psychological state or possibly altered attention and awareness in which the individual is unusually responsive to suggestions.
  • The Nature of Hypnosis
    • A common misconception is that the hypnotic state is much like a sleep state.
  • The Four Steps in Hypnosis
    • Distractions are minimized.
    • The hypnotist tells the person to concentrate on something specific, such as an imagined scene or the ticking of a watch.
    • The hypnotist tells the person what to expect in the hypnotic state, such as relaxation or a pleasant floating sensation.
    • The hypnotist suggests certain events or feelings he or she knows will occur or observes occurring.
  • Individual Variations in Hypnosis
    • A very small percentage of the population can be hypnotized.

Explaining Hypnosis

  • A Divided State of Consciousness
    • Ernest Hilgard proposed that hypnosis involves a special divided state of consciousness, a sort of splitting of consciousness into separate components. One component follows the hypnotist’s commands, while another component acts as a “hidden observer.”
  • Social Cognitive Behaviour
    • Views that hypnosis as a result of social factors associated with the hypnotic context, coupled with cognitive events involved in the efforts of the hypnotized person to immerse himself or herself in the role of the hypnotized person.

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