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Hearing voices just before wake up

E

earth09

New member
Joined
Nov 12, 2021
Messages
2
Location
Hong Kong
Hello all,

Since one year ago, I started to hear voices just before I wake up. Sometimes, the voices occurred inside the dream. Sometimes, it is just before the moment I wake up but without any dream. The duration is a few seconds I guess. Most often it can be just one or two words, a short sentence, or sound of object. The content is quite random, at one time, say for example, I heard of the train station broadcast words while inside the dream. The frequency can be every day when I wake up, or it can also be 2 or 3 times per week. I got to know by searching that this seems to be a condition named hypnopompic hallucinations.

I have once visited a psychiatrist and she said it is considered as normal and I can just leave it and not to bother by it.

However, I still have some worry and concern that if I not seek for any treatment, whether this may be any early sign of symptom of any mental illness.

Thus I have seek for treatment since I got this. I haven't taken any psychiatric medicine as I worry any side effect. I have visited Chinese medicine, but so far it seems it doesn't improve so much.

Recently I have switched to alternative medicine like singing bowl and reiki treatment. On the night after the treatment, I could hear no sound after I woke up. However, one or two days later, the sound would appear again. It was as if it only being effective for one or two days, and then feel like I was "reverse back to the original state". So I feel it was effective, but as it seems only last for 1 or 2 days, on a practical level, I think it's not practically to do the treatment like every day.

I have been trying to keep a log of any stressful things in my day and whether I heard of any sound the next day when I wake up. And I found that when I'm more stressful, the sound will appear. However, when I'm not stressful, the sound can also appear (although sometimes when not stressful the sound will not appear).

I have once tried to figure out what's the cause of it when I first experienced it. But it seemed to me at that time, I was not particularly stressed, nor did I experienced any life changing event. I felt like I just got this condition all of a sudden.

I'm wondering, will this condition be ever cured, or I would have to live with it for the rest of my life? Anyone has similar experience who got cured finally?
 
A

Aurelius

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 14, 2018
Messages
694
Welcome to the forum earth 09.

What you describe does sound very much like hypnopompic hallucinations (HPH). It is estimated that 5-13% of people may experience HPHs at some point in their lives. Episodes are more common in younger people and in females. There are a lot of reasons why you might have HPH episodes, but in many cases it is just a natural occurrence associated with the transition from REM sleep to waking i.e., the brain and central nervous system being momentarily in sleep mode and waking mode at the same time). HPHs are hallucinations and not dreams/nightmares, so can be experienced whether one has been dreaming or not.

Some people have bouts of HPHs, some people have only a few episodes, some people have regular episodes, some people seem to have them just for a limited period in their lives, and some people experience them across their lifespan.

The psychiatrist you saw gave you sound advice, because the medications that have been found effective in suppressing REM sleep are antidepressants (SSRIs or TCAs). Unless you are left very distressed or are left unable to function normally during the day by HPHs, taking this type of medication is not advisable unless absolutely clinically necessary. If you are left very distressed or are left unable to function normally during the day by HPHs, you should see a doctor - especially if you are left with either or both of these outcomes regularly.

While I am unable to point you to a 'cure', I hope this info helps a little.
 
E

earth09

New member
Joined
Nov 12, 2021
Messages
2
Location
Hong Kong
Welcome to the forum earth 09.

What you describe does sound very much like hypnopompic hallucinations (HPH). It is estimated that 5-13% of people may experience HPHs at some point in their lives. Episodes are more common in younger people and in females. There are a lot of reasons why you might have HPH episodes, but in many cases it is just a natural occurrence associated with the transition from REM sleep to waking i.e., the brain and central nervous system being momentarily in sleep mode and waking mode at the same time). HPHs are hallucinations and not dreams/nightmares, so can be experienced whether one has been dreaming or not.

Some people have bouts of HPHs, some people have only a few episodes, some people have regular episodes, some people seem to have them just for a limited period in their lives, and some people experience them across their lifespan.

The psychiatrist you saw gave you sound advice, because the medications that have been found effective in suppressing REM sleep are antidepressants (SSRIs or TCAs). Unless you are left very distressed or are left unable to function normally during the day by HPHs, taking this type of medication is not advisable unless absolutely clinically necessary. If you are left very distressed or are left unable to function normally during the day by HPHs, you should see a doctor - especially if you are left with either or both of these outcomes regularly.

While I am unable to point you to a 'cure', I hope this info helps a little.
Thanks for the info and sharing. This does provide a feeling of comfort.
 
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