In our book, sleep issues of any kind are scary. But on Friday the 13th, as you might put in our favorite scary movie, it’s easy to imagine what kind of sleep issues can be linked to the villain of the film.
How can we address and fix such sleep issues? Follow along as we take a look at three notorious horror movie villains and what they can teach us about our sleep issues.
Freddy Krueger and the Power of Nightmares
Wes Craven’s original film “A Nightmare on Elm Street” is a classic and has spawned a franchise that totals 9 films – as well as comic books, novels, and even a television show. At the heart of it all is Freddy Krueger, an imposing and haunting figure that greets people in their most vulnerable state.
The sleep problem for this horror villain is as direct as it gets. Perhaps you might have seen the red-and-green sweater-wearing figure in your sleep. Just don’t follow the other characters’ leads, by trying to avoid sleep at all costs. That is simply not a good way to battle bad dreams!
The Problem: Nightmares are characterized as vivid and disturbing dreams that produce an emotional reaction. Laura McMullen reports that 85 percent of adults occasionally have them – around 8 to 29 percent have them at least once a month, and 2 to 6 percent have them once a week.
How to Fight Freddy: Nightmares are caused by certain medications, conditions (including sleep disorders, PTSD, and more), and even a late-night snack. Ironically (like the movies), sleep deprivation can cause nightmares. Changing medications, treating the underlying disorder, and behavioral changes can prove effective. WebMD reports that the latter is effective for 70 percent of adults that deal with nightmares from PTSD, depression, and anxiety.
Freddy will likely never depart form the silver screen. But with the right approach, you can do a lot to curb any nightmares that may be affecting you or your children.
The Many Worlds of Jason Vorhees
No Friday the 13th post would be complete without the iconic villain from the “Friday the 13th” films. If you have lost track at home, the official count is at 12 films – at least for now. The infamous mask is known even by those who have never seen the films, as the character has broken into mainstream American culture like few others.
From Camp Crystal Lake to the time of 2455(in the critically-acclaimed “Jason X”), Jason can represent a sleep issue that isn’t given the attention it deserves. It has likely affected your sleep habits, perhaps without you even knowing about it.
The Problem: Environment. Like Jason following his victims in the woods, space, Manhattan, and plenty of other interesting places, your sleep issues can show up according to your environment. Camping or at a hotel? Whether you are sleeping somewhere new or your room, environmental changes can take a toll on your sleep quality. Even a subtle nuisance can undermine a night’s sleep
How to Fight Jason: Take control of the room, enhancing comfort through light, sound, temperature, and removing work and stressors from the bedroom. Use these powerful bedroom tips to help you get great sleep regardless of where you are sleeping! If you are traveling, bring everything you need – including your own pillow, set of earplugs, and maintaining your sleep routine. Learn how to go to sleep better for more tips and information!
You can go in the woods. Just don’t forget to make sleep a priority.
The Face of Michael Myers
You’ll see him in all but one of the 10 “Halloween” films (the aberration of “Halloween III…”). It’s interesting to think that what may be most recognizable from the franchise is the music. Many people equate that music to fear itself, which – along with stress as well – forms the current sleep issue.
Just like Michael, your fear and stress may be hidden – just until it strikes. Luckily for us, it’s not Michael – just the time to go to sleep!
The Problem: Fear and stress cost us sleep. One study found that Britons have lost a month of sleep over the course of the year due to stress – mostly regarding money and work. Whatever the source may be, having it in your mind as you’re trying to sleep is a recipe for disaster. Your source of stress/fear might be better than Jamie Lee Curtis’ character – but it can be devastating to how well and how much you sleep.
How to Fight Michael: Find the source and act appropriately. Take steps to eliminate it, if possible, and engage in healthy activities that can help you cope. Try writing things down that are on your mind before your bed, and do your best to remove stressors from your bedtime routine and your sleep. Take the time to relax and de-stress in order to enjoy a stress-free night of sleep!
One last tip: Don’t get the theme music from the movies stuck in your head!
Taking Care of Scary Sleep Issues
Don’t hesitate to talk to your doctor for additional tips and/or if you have sleep issues that are damaging your sleep. Some sleep issues may be genuine sleep disorders which require specific medical attention.
Stay tuned for more sleep tips and news on our sleep blog!