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KNash

Phantom smells

23 posts in this topic

Last night I woke up for times to a weird scent. The first time I woke up I ignored it and went back to sleep figuring that my mind was just playing tricks on me. The second time I woke up I was completely sure that I smelled something strange so I woke my boyfriend up. He didn't smell anything and the scent just disappeared. The third time I woke up I was still half awake and I could smell it again. I wanted to go outside and smell the air to see if there was anything but I was too tired and went back to sleep. The fourth time I woke up I just ignored it and fell asleep again.

What was odd was that I wasn't dreaming about anything in particular but when the scent would appear I had this vision in my head of meat cooking but it smelled really bad. All four times I had that image of the meat in my head. I'm pretty sure the neighbors weren't up cooking that late. I even wondered if the toilet broke or if sewage was backed up but there was nothing. I'm not saying it was anything paranormal but, it was strange. The mind can do some amazing things. I've never had this happen before.

Anyone else ever experience phantom smells?

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I am not a doctor, nor do I doubt that you are smelling these things. I do suggest to see your doctor though, several things can cause a phantom scent.

I am not trying to scare you, but it's a good idea.

Just a question, does your family have a history of stroke, aneurysms or any epilepsy?

http://www.divinecaroline.com/22181/97751-what-s-smell-phantom-scents-mean

http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/phantosmia/AN01684

Again, I am not trying to scare you, it's better to err on caution though, would you not agree?

(I hope it's something safe, or perhaps unexplainable)

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Oddly enough, I was researching information about phantom smells because of my experiences and found what RedSquirrel found. Which scares me. Between 2001-2006 on three different occasions, in two different cities, I experienced phantom smells of roses. I was naive at the time and believed in what my boyfriend and his family were saying. They said when you smell phantom roses it means an angel is near. :rolleyes: After recovering from the brainwashing of fundamental Christianity...I looked for other possible reasons.

What really frightens me is that my mom has epilepsy and has suffered a couple strokes..... :unsure2: What does that mean for me? Too bad I don't have the funds to find out. :unsure:

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I am sorry if I scared you. I don't mean to post things to worry, just to get those out of the way if this is something unexplainable.

I figure if we start removing what -is- explainable, we may be left with something a bit more solid than "I think".

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Could hypnogogia have a hand in creating these smells too? Since every time you experience them is solely around sleep time.

Trying to think of another natural source that isn't as disheartening.

Edited by Jerry Only

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Could hypnogogia have a hand in creating these smells too? Since every time you experience them is solely around sleep time.

Trying to think of another natural source that isn't as disheartening.

Jerry, thanks. I honestly don't mean to gloom and doom. I feel horrid, but it is good to cover bases.

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Have you had any recent migraines?

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Thank you everyone for you input. Redsquirrel, I don't know about anyone in my family having any bouts of epilepsy or aneurysms but my dad did have two strokes when alive. He was also a heavy smoker and drink however.

I've never experienced these phantom smells before. I'm going to see if I experience them again before jumping to any conclusions and freaking myself out lol. I'll read up on hypnogogia too. I wish I knew what other paranormal things could influence or cause phantom smells. Of course I'd rather hope for that instead of a medical issue.

I wonder if it's normal to smell the same phantom smell or does it change if it is a medical problem? Like I said, last night was the first time ever.

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Someone asked, but I didn't see an answer. Do you suffer from migraines? Are you pregnant? Does this happen at a certain point in your monthly cycle? Maybe what you're smelling isn't a phantom smell but rather a heightened sense of smell. From personal experience on the migraines and the cycle, there are things that I can smell that nobody else can but the smell is there. It's just hard to track down and without anyone else verifying it, there's usually little reason to try to. There are times when the trash has to go out at least every night (even though I live alone and don't make much trash) and sometimes even twice a day because I can't stand it.

Another thing to think about is what your boyfriend is eating before he's going to bed. He may just not be waking up enough to smell it! :)

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The first thing I thought was that my boyfriend ate something bad LOL. But I got worried when I realized that it wasn't him. I haven't had any migraines and I'm not pregnant but last night I was just starting my monthly cycle and all the glorious discomfort that comes with it :geek:. I didn't think about my cycle as a factor till after I wrote my last post. I swear the smell was so real that I didn't believe that it could be in my head and I'm a fairly rational person too! I've never experienced anything like this before.

I'll see if it happens again tonight. It was strange because I didn't just wake up once but I felt like I was being persistently bothered with the smell for some reason.

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Yeah. Very strange. Keep us posted. :)

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Oddly enough, I was researching information about phantom smells because of my experiences and found what RedSquirrel found. Which scares me. Between 2001-2006 on three different occasions, in two different cities, I experienced phantom smells of roses. I was naive at the time and believed in what my boyfriend and his family were saying. They said when you smell phantom roses it means an angel is near. :rolleyes: After recovering from the brainwashing of fundamental Christianity...I looked for other possible reasons.

What really frightens me is that my mom has epilepsy and has suffered a couple strokes..... :unsure2: What does that mean for me? Too bad I don't have the funds to find out. :unsure:

After my late mother's funeral, I placed some of the roses from the funeral service in a vase on the dining room table. They were particularly fragrant, and the scent filled the room. After a couple of weeks they wilted and were tossed out. Strangely, the strong perfume hung around for months after, inexplicably.

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The first thing I thought was that my boyfriend ate something bad LOL.

:lol:

But I got worried when I realized that it wasn't him. I haven't had any migraines and I'm not pregnant but last night I was just starting my monthly cycle and all the glorious discomfort that comes with it :geek:. I didn't think about my cycle as a factor till after I wrote my last post. I swear the smell was so real that I didn't believe that it could be in my head and I'm a fairly rational person too! I've never experienced anything like this before.

I'll see if it happens again tonight. It was strange because I didn't just wake up once but I felt like I was being persistently bothered with the smell for some reason.

As I have it, the brain can create visual and auditary hallucinations, sometimes even a combination of both.

Can't it also create some kind of hallucination upon your smell....senses? I wouldn't be too surprised at all if it could.

I've had times were I've even hallucinated taste. Suddenly felt a taste of something I hadn't eaten in a long time. At that moment I'm asking myself "Why the hell is this happening?".

Unfortunately, it doesn't happen too oftenly. :P

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As I have it, the brain can create visual and auditary hallucinations, sometimes even a combination of both.

Can't it also create some kind of hallucination upon your smell....senses? I wouldn't be too surprised at all if it could.

Yeah, since everything we experience in life comes from our brain telling us through the use of the 5 senses, all of those senses can be hallucinated.

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Last night it didn't happen. I woke up a few extra times though because I think I was wondering if it would happen again. I even remembered something that I didn't at first. When I woke up one of those times for a second I thought I saw a thin figure in front of the window curtains. After I squinted I realized nothing was there.

Maybe being on the threshold of consciousness and sleep just put me in the right state to have smell and visual hallucinations. That kind of made me wonder because I read that sleep paralysis can happen in that state. An old hag attack is the last thing I need lol. ^_^

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Last night it didn't happen. I woke up a few extra times though because I think I was wondering if it would happen again. I even remembered something that I didn't at first. When I woke up one of those times for a second I thought I saw a thin figure in front of the window curtains. After I squinted I realized nothing was there.

Maybe being on the threshold of consciousness and sleep just put me in the right state to have smell and visual hallucinations. That kind of made me wonder because I read that sleep paralysis can happen in that state. An old hag attack is the last thing I need lol. ^_^

If you do (and you probably won't) have an "old hag" attack, just know you are not alone, what you are seeing/feeling is not real. I have sleep paralysis occasionally, at first my church tried to convince me it was a demon. They tried all sorts of silly things from movies to "free" me from this.

Just a run of the mill sleep disturbance. I hope your smell/vision thing is similar, it gets much easier to deal with once you know it's not real.

I forgot to mention, I tend to have the "old hag" whenever I go to bed stressed, not sure if it's a linking factor, but you might want to have a wind down period before bed, are you keeping a log of these happenings (aside from on this thread)?

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If you do (and you probably won't) have an "old hag" attack, just know you are not alone, what you are seeing/feeling is not real. I have sleep paralysis occasionally, at first my church tried to convince me it was a demon. They tried all sorts of silly things from movies to "free" me from this.

Just a run of the mill sleep disturbance. I hope your smell/vision thing is similar, it gets much easier to deal with once you know it's not real.

I forgot to mention, I tend to have the "old hag" whenever I go to bed stressed, not sure if it's a linking factor, but you might want to have a wind down period before bed, are you keeping a log of these happenings (aside from on this thread)?

I haven't kept a log since it was the first time but before going to sleep I normally listen to a chapter from an audio book with the lights off. It really helps me get to sleep. I'm listening to Bram Stoker's Dracula lol. But I've been listening to it for quite a while now with no problems.

Did you ever have phantom smells around the time of a "hag" attack? To be honest I don't remember anything in particular that was bothering me. I was working on a short story though before going to sleep. I've also been doing that a lot lately with no problems either. I'm going to write down what I remember from that night and keep it in case it happens again or if I experience another sleep disturbance.

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I haven't kept a log since it was the first time but before going to sleep I normally listen to a chapter from an audio book with the lights off. It really helps me get to sleep. I'm listening to Bram Stoker's Dracula lol. But I've been listening to it for quite a while now with no problems.

Did you ever have phantom smells around the time of a "hag" attack? To be honest I don't remember anything in particular that was bothering me. I was working on a short story though before going to sleep. I've also been doing that a lot lately with no problems either. I'm going to write down what I remember from that night and keep it in case it happens again or if I experience another sleep disturbance.

The only time I recall getting anything close to a phantom smell while having a sleep paralysis event was the taste of blood. Of course, I had bit myself pretty hard when I saw the creatures that were part of the hallucination, and had actually bled. I wish I had more info for you. I'll look up a bit more into it though.

EDIT: I did find (on a less than reputable site) this tidbit from a study:

Research conducted by J. Allan Cheyne (Cheyne, 2001) indicates that it happens generally when one is going into a sleep state or coming out of a sleep state. Cheyne and some other researchers have stated the following as some of the key observations about Sleep paralysis.

It occurs frequently among 3-6% of the world population.

About 30% of young adults experience Sleep paralysis at least once in their lives.

It is more likely to happen to young adults.

It can last from a few minutes to a few hours at a time.

People also experience, sense or see a presence around them during their paralysed state. Fear grips them and some of them have said that a demonic force was out to possess their soul or was trying to crush or smother them.

In some cases, people feel pressure or a choking sensation. This is accompanied by breathing difficulties. In few instances, this escalates into sexual molestation or assault.

A foul smell has been perceived at times during the paralytic attack.

It is more likely to happen when sleeping on one’s back (supine position).

People who go through it are embarrassed by the event thinking that something must be wrong with them mentally.

I hate to ask this and you do not have to answer, are you at this time taking seroquel, Xanax, valium or any similar medications?

Edited by RedSquirrel

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The only time I recall getting anything close to a phantom smell while having a sleep paralysis event was the taste of blood. Of course, I had bit myself pretty hard when I saw the creatures that were part of the hallucination, and had actually bled. I wish I had more info for you. I'll look up a bit more into it though.

EDIT: I did find (on a less than reputable site) this tidbit from a study:

I hate to ask this and you do not have to answer, are you at this time taking seroquel, Xanax, valium or any similar medications?

I'm actually not on any medications at all. That's another reason why it was so weird. The part about the foul smell really stood out to me because that was the only way I could explain the rotting meat smell. I didn't have any of the phantom smells last night either. I'm wondering if it may just be a one time thing. Or maybe it will happen again ten years later. Who knows? It was definitely a first though.

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Greetings,

First off, sorry to anyone who gets a notification from this, I know you posted this years ago.

I woke up at 5:24am today to a very strong smell. I started patting around on my pillows and blankets, thinking I had peed, or bled during the night, but nothing turned up, everything was dry.

I put my nose on everything, and none of them was the source. I rubbed my face and could smell it on my palms. It was a rotting smell, though not as offensive. The smell, it was like a pool of thick, old, wet blood. I was confused, and started smelling my bed and room again, thinking that I had put my hand in something. Nope, just me and my pillows, and they smelled fine. 

I am an insomniac, so I was awake at 3:51am and the smell wasn't there at that time. I checked over my body and the smell was only on my palms. I wasnt bleeding, and I didnt have any new cuts on me. 

I know what is happening, and what it means, but I wanted to have a place where it was written down for more than just me to read. 

 

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For the past 4 years I've been woken up all hours of the night, sporadically, with this awful smell in my nose. It always smelled familiar but nasty. Last night was 4 times. I lost a decent amount of sleep, and have to breathe through my mouth and calm down to make it go away. I know I know this awful smell, but I can only place it when I'm semi-conscious. So today I used a frying pan that yesterday I cooked 2 steaks, salt, "I Can't Believe It's Not Butter" and pepper, garlic powder and thick soy sauce for 2 steaks, a link of sausage. (I covered it throughout the night, don't judge). This morning I cooked a covered egg and the smell was there. It burns my nostrils and makes me dizzy like I'm going to pass out. I've had this certain in-my-nose scent for years, and it always happens when I sleep. This was the first time it happened while I was awake and my left nostril still burns. I washed the pan and all was fine. This morning it triggered some kind of memory but since I was more concerned with getting the pan outside it dissipated. It's always happened at night. Today was the first time it happened during the day. I know I know this smell. It's almost obscene and not due to cooking. I firmly believe the smell of my eggs cooking triggered it, with the smells of the seasoning. I know, I sound gross. I'm worried I have something wrong with important parts... I can remember where I know this smell from since I was a child, but I can't exactly tell anyone during the night and by the time I try to write it down the thoughts are gone. After washing the pan earlier, my left nostril is burning still. I have absolutely no allergies nor am on any meds. Not even Tylenol. 

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And no, I don't always cook like this. It was dinner I made for myself before bed, covered the pan, and tried to cook an egg in the morning. I served no one else this.

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Well get this... last week, I was asleep on my sofa overnight and I jumped up in a state of panic smelling burning electronic circuitry boards. I looked around and the smell stayed for 3 seconds during my wakeful period. Then back to sleep I went. 3 times this happened throughout the night. Next morning, I headed out of the door, got into my car and plugged in my dash-cam and up it went in smoke. My car was filled the smell from the night before for hours until it aired out!

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