What is sleepwalking? Let's find out what it means to be sleepwalking, what are the causes and the most effective treatments to eliminate the problem.
Sleep disorder , in most cases, sleepwalking manifests itself at an early age and disappears as it came within the period of adolescence. Let's see what are the causes, the symptoms and, above all, what are the precautions to keep in mind to limit the episodes.
Sleepwalking: what it is and why it occurs
We speak of sleepwalking when a person walks or performs complex activities while sleeping. Generally, it occurs in the first hours of falling asleep, i.e. during the deep sleep phase and the sleepwalker, upon awakening, does not remember anything, at most a few fragments. It is a problem that, in most cases, appears in children and disappears completely naturally within the sixteenth year of age. Only rarely does sleepwalking persist in adults.
Sleepwalking has no certain causes , but many specialists agree that it is a hereditary problem . However, even if it is not a dangerous disorder, there are some factors that can trigger it or make it worse. From stress to restless legs syndrome, through infections with fever, the consumption of alcohol or drugs and some medicines. Breathing disorders can also aggravate this disorder, such as sleep apnea .
It is recommended not to wake up the sleepwalker, to avoid traumatizing him, but to accompany him back to bed by speaking to him delicately. Never yell at a person with this problem as you will only make the situation worse.
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Sleepwalking: symptoms and treatments
A sleepwalker may sit up in bed and look around in apparent confusion, or may begin walking, opening closets, dressing, or eating. Sometimes, it may happen that he is able to leave the house and even drive. Generally, the eyes are open even if the gaze is completely absent, while the speeches can be more or less intelligible. If someone tries to talk to him, the sleepwalker may even respond in kind.
Typically, a sleepwalking episode lasts less than ten minutes. As far as cures are concerned, there are still no treatments capable of eliminating the problem. There are, however, a number of tricks that can be of great help. First of all, it is recommended to sleep for at least 8 hours, always going to bed and waking up at the same time. If possible, the bedroom should be dark and quiet. Furthermore, before throwing yourself into the arms of Morpheus, it is preferable not to drink sugary drinks containing caffeine and empty the bladder. In rare cases, your doctor might prescribe benzodiazepines or antidepressants .
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