Coping with the Fear of Adult Night Terrors

It can be scary when you wake up panicked, knowing something is wrong but not quite sure what. Many different things can cause adult night terrors, and they're more common than we think: about 25% of adults experience them at some time in their lives. But don't worry! You have lots of options for ending the fear. Read on to find out more about adult night terrors and how to stop them from being so frightening!

What is an adult night terror?

A sleep disturbance is when you wake up feeling like something wrong or terrifying is happening, but you aren't sure what it is or why it's happening to you. As you try to fall back to sleep, you may start freaking out, becoming fearful and panicky. Most adults with chronic nightmares remember their first adult night terror and how different it felt from the usual nightmare. They reflect, thinking, "This is real; this isn't a dream." This can be confusing and terrifying, especially when you wake up to find yourself unable to move.

It's common for people to have nightmares as a child. They're scary, but most of them make sense (like being chased by a monster). Children know what they're experiencing is being created from their imagination and therefore don't take it as seriously as adult night terrors (which can feel like something wrong or frightening is happening). Children also don't usually have the same feeling of paralysis that adults have during their nightmares.

Some ways to cope With the Fear of Adult Night Terrors

  • Do not think of it as scary. Remind yourself that you are safe and will be alright no matter what. Put on a favorite TV show or playlist, watch it, or listen to your favorite song and focus on the music instead of the scary images happening in your head. Focus on the little good things happening to you during this attack, such as, "I'm so happy I'm still alive" (or something similar). This will distract you from feeling frightened and help you calm down. Your mind may try to alter your experience by making it seem like something is terrible when it's not.

  • Tell yourself that you will be fine and will get through this. You will make it through this night terror and survive it in a good state of mind. Focus on the positives; if you look at the situation positively, then it becomes possible to cope with the fear of adult night terrors better. For example, if you had a bad childhood, remember that now is not like then and that bad things are not happening now just because they happened before.

  • Try to remember how you felt the first time you had a nightmare if that helps. If it does, try to focus on that feeling as your experience with this nightmare starts to suffocate, and you feel more panicked and fearful. Try to put yourself in a position where you feel stable, secure, and comfortable. Things like going back to sleep or lying down help you get into this state of mind. Try to get into a routine of making yourself feel safe. If you start to feel unsafe, make sure at least one of your friends is with you at all times. This can help your mind realize that you are safe and that it's OK to stop feeling scared. As more nights go by, the fear of adult night terrors will become less scary, and even if you have another attack, it will be less frightening because you have already survived it once.

  • Try hypnosis! This can help a lot if done properly. Try a night light! This may sound silly, but if you have one, turn it on and off as you wake up to feel more in control of your situation. The lights may trick your mind into thinking that it's daytime and things are not as scary.

  • Consider therapy! This can help a lot, too, if done properly; it will teach you the real cause of the fear of adult night terrors and help you deal with things that are making this issue worse for you—like trauma or nightmares from childhood, etc.

Overcome it easily

Don't think too deeply about it. If you start to think about the cause of your adult night terrors and all the bad things that can be related to them, it will only make you more afraid and less able to sleep.

Try not to worry about it being a disorder if that's what's bothering you; if you have these problems often and/or are afraid of them, then yes, you may have a disorder. But don't see it as a bad thing or something that makes you abnormal—that will only make things worse for you! If you're scared or feel like something terrible will happen, make sure your loved ones are around before you sleep. You don't want them to wake up and find that something has severely happened without anyone for support and help!

Thus, coping with the fear of adult night terrors is not tricky. We need to follow some strategies, and we will be able to recover from such a mental disease quickly. Try some of the abovementioned methods, and you will feel relief soon.

To cope with the fear of adult night terrors tonight, you need to feel safe and secure about your surroundings. This can help you feel confident about your situation and prevent feelings of paranoia from getting out of control.


In closing, it is important to mention that the dread of adult night terrors is one of individuals' most common concerns. This is because adults are more likely to have these kinds of nightmares. However, this issue can be resolved by utilizing the appropriate treatments and therapies, as evidenced by the fact that several individuals have achieved success by adhering to the proper procedures. This article may help you find a solution to this problem and recover from such conditions.

Updated on: 03-Feb-2023


Kickstart Your Career

Get certified by completing the course

Get Started