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Hypnagogic Hallucinations when Falling Asleep or Waking Up

Abstract: Hypnagogic hallucinations, weird pictures when waking and sleeping, are quite common and usually not a symptom of any serious problem.

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Hypnagogic Hallucinations when Falling Asleep or Waking Up

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Question(s): 
Written by: Martin Winkler
First version: 22 Jul 2008.
Latest revision: 27 Aug 2008.

What are hypnagogic hallucinations? I have terrifying dreamlike images just as I am falling asleep and sometimes when I am waking up. Is this dangerous?

Answer:

Many people experience dreamlike images, sounds or sometimes smells before falling asleep or waking up. This is called "hypnagogic hallucinations". Although it is called "hallucination" it is not at all dangerous or a symptom of a dangerous disorder. But is can cause fear and be frightening. Usually there is no specific treatment for this problem.
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