Sleep is an adventure for Dylan Dreyer and her husband.
During the 3rd hour of TODAY on Wednesday, Dylan discussed how hubby Brian Fichera has night terrors.
While commenting on an article about how couples can be happy and share their beds, Dylan shared some details about Brian’s behavior.
“When we travel, I need to sleep by the door, because Brian, and I’ve talked about this before, has wicked night terrors,” she said. “So I need to stop him in case he’s going to run out the room at some point. He sleepwalks, and sometimes he thinks I’m a monster, so he will jump out of the bed.”
She continued by saying, “He will push me out of the bed and then run to the door.”
Dylan also said Brian’s night terrors have caused their home damage.
“The lamp on his side of the bed is broken, because he jumped out of bed once and broke the whole lighting unit in there,” she said. “I do my best to protect him.”
She revealed that it runs in his family, too: His father, brother and nephew also have them.
“A night tremor is a non-REM parasomnia,” Dr. Raj Dasgupta, a pulmonary and sleep doctor at USC Keck School of Medicine, told TODAY. “They are unwanted actions or thoughts as you're falling asleep and waking up and transitioning to a different stage of sleep.” A nightmare, on the other hand, is an REM parasomnia during which the person remains asleep.
Night terrors tend to be more common in children. In fact, Dasgupta estimates about 40 percent of kids have them, while noting “a very small number of adults do.”
Why do kids get them? “Our sleep architecture is not mature in kids,” Dasgupta said.
He also said there are certain factors that can help induce them, including sleep deprivation, stress and a change in sleep schedule.
Dasgupta also advised that you should let someone having a night terror remain asleep.
“If someone is having a night terror, it’s more problematic to wake them up. It’s best to just make sure they do not hurt themselves or others,” he said.