What is Somnambulism(Sleepwalking)?

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Sleepwalking, also known as Somnambulism, is a behavior disorder found more commonly in children than in adults. This happens if the person is sleep deprived. This occurs during deep sleep and results in walking or performing some tasks as well. Symptoms of sleepwalking vary from simple to complex. It may involve sitting on bed, turning around, moving head around and even travelling to longer distances. It should be noted that it’s recommended to awaken a person who is sleepwalking or else it might prove dangerous. The sleepwalker may not remember and cannot not even respond.

 

Symptoms:

  • You would find the sleepwalker walk quietly into the room or might try to escape or even run.
  • Typically, the eyes of sleepwalker is open with a “glassy” look. If you question the person, you may receive a slow response or no response at all.
  • At times, it might involve actions like moving a furniture, climbing out of the window.
  • Sleeptalking

Causes:

  • If you are sleep deprived, you might face this issue.
  • If you happen to be on a chaotic sleep schedule, you may follow this pattern.
  • Stress can also lead to this condition.
  • If you are on some sedative drugs, you may get into the habit of sleepwalking.

 

 

Medical conditions linked to sleepwalking:

  • Heart rhythm issue
  • Fever
  • Heartburn
  • Nighttime seizures

 

Treatment:

There is no specific treatment found for this condition.  In adults, it can be cured by hypnosis.

There are some pharmacological therapies such as sedative-hypnotics or antidepressants which have been proved to be helpful in reducing the sleepwalking condition in some people.

 

Increasing the sleep schedule time might also prove beneficial. It is recommended to create a safer environment for children who are into the habit of sleepwalking. For example, if the child has this habit, then the child shouldn’t be made to sleep on a bunk bed. Any sharp objects around the bed should be dislodged.

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