Nightmares Topic Guide
Nightmares: Nightmares occur from time to time in many children, but they are most common in preschoolers (children aged 3 to 6 years) because this is the age at which normal fears develop. Practicing good sleep hygiene and other strategies can help eliminate nightmares.
Night Terrors Night terrors comprise a sleep disorder distinctly different from nightmares, which are normal and happen during REM sleep. Intense fear and/or crying over multiple episodes during sleep characterize night terrors, which usually occur in children. Rarely, tricyclic antidepressants are prescribed in severe cases, but the disorder usually is not harmful and resolves itself.