What does cataplexy look like? GIF by Eleanor of www.Falling-Asleep.com

Check out this amazing depiction of terrifying symptom of ‪#‎narcolepsy‬ called CATAPLEXY – created by Eleanor of Falling Asleep: A Narcolepsy GuidebookPlease note: this character is fully conscious and awake yet crumbling to the ground paralyzed. It’s terrifying.



For more infographics, blogs and resources: www.falling-asleep.com

Commentary by Julie Flygare:
I was 22 when my knees fight buckled while laughing at a joke. It was the strangest sensation I ever felt. Over the next few years, the buckling got worse til my body was crumbling to the ground – always when laughing or slightly annoyed.

This is CATAPLEXY, a temporary paralysis, ranging from jerky knee-buckling, head-bobbing, eyes-fluttering, slurred speech (talking as if drunk) to collapsing to the ground, paralyzed and unable to move or speak, but fully awake and aware for up to a minute.

It’s terrifying – a bit like being awake in a corpse…

Why do 70% of people with narcolepsy experience this? Actually EVERY person experiences this same paralysis, only while asleep during REM/dream sleep at night – our bodies paralyze themselves so we don’t act out our dreams (as that would be dangerous).

For people with “type 1 narcolepsy” like myself and Eleanor, the neurological boundaries between sleeping and dreaming have gone haywire – so when feeling certain emotions during the DAY, our bodies mistakenly paralyze themselves for dream sleep, even though we are fully awake.

Terrific infographics, blogs and resources on Eleanor’s site: www.falling-asleep.com.


  1. Maya Edieann Gabriel on August 15, 2016 at 6:55 pm

    I’ve been falling asleep during the day for as long as I can rember. I’m 55 years old. For me, I feel all of the blood falls out of my brain within 10 minuets of sitting down. I can’t stay awake no matter what I do.
    I say your interview om the Sleep Sessions with Dr. Bruse.
    I will take what you’ve talked about to my Dr.
    THANKS, Maya

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