Is your kid sleepwalking, and what do you know about it?

Do you notice your little one wandering in the house – in midnight – looking confused and dazed? This of course is something unnerving that your child is sleepwalking, but you do not have to worry because it is common in kids and it mostly disappears in teen age.

As a matter of fact, sleepwalking is not just about walking in the house during sleep; it can involve wandering outside or doing inappropriate things like peeing in the closet, and no matter what they do, they will not remember their sleepwalking episodes.

Actually, there are five stages of our night’s sleep 1, 2, 3, 4 and REM “rapid eye movement”; each cycle of these ranges from 90 to 100 minutes, and sleepwalking often occurs during stages 3 & 4.

Sleepwalking episodes happen within the first two hours of sleep, and they range from few seconds to half an hour. It may run in families, i.e. if you or your spouse is a sleepwalker or used to be, there is a good chance your child will be. Anyway, some factors can cause sleepwalking including fatigue or lack of sleep, fever or illness, irregular sleep and certain medications.

Sleepwalking symptoms include sleep talk, looking dazed and not responding when spoken to; if you witness any of these in your kind, he or she is a sleepwalker. It is important to know that sleepwalkers’ eyes do not see the same way as when they are awake; they often think they are in a different place.

Sometimes, sleepwalking is accompanied by sleep apnea, night terrors or even bedwetting. This condition is not harmful itself; however it can be hazardous as sleepwalkers do not realize what they are doing, so it is important to take precautions such as locking the windows and doors in the whole house not just your kid’s room and remove sharp or dangerous things from around your child’s bed and out of his or her reach in general.
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