Sleepwalking 101

Sleepwalking is common in childhood and can cause behaviours like sitting up, walking around and even doing other activities during sleep. Dr. Brian Murray, a sleep specialist at Sunnybrook says, if you don’t outgrow it, that’s a problem. If sleepwalking occurs in adult life, it’s always concerning and there’s something else going on and should be investigated. There are two main kinds of sleepwalking. One happens during slow-wave sleep, which can be a sign of sleep apnea, periodic limb movements or even seizures triggering arousals during the night. People often don’t remember this type of sleepwalking. The other kind happens during the REM sleep, which people are much more likely to recall. We see REM sleep behaviour disorder commonly in this hospital and that’s a condition associated with Parkinson’s disease. This type can also be associated with certain types of dementia. Dr. Murray says there are medications like some anti-depressants, that can aggravate sleepwalking. The first step in getting help is being assessed by a qualified sleep specialist. The good news is, treatment is available and effective for most people. That could include medications to address the underlying health issues that are triggering the sleepwalking. Or in some people, Dr. Murray says behavioural changes may help. Having naps decreases deep sleep, the stage when sleepwalking can be triggered. He says changing the external environment can also be effective. So if people have a lot of extraneous noise then that can trigger arousals so we might suggest something like a white noise machine to drown out random environmental sounds. So should you ever try to wake up a sleepwalker? Dr. Murray says no, provided they are not in danger. If you are alseep but you have a litle bit of arousal you might enact your dreams, fall out of bed and have an injury. So the idea that you want to be in one state and not drifting in between states is an important concept. So if you sleepwalk or live with someone who does, make sure the sleep environment is safe so no injuries happen. And contact your doctor in the morning. With Sunnyview, I’m Monica Matys.

Comments 100

  • Very Helpful

  • I have a question for you. I very often lift my arms while sleeping also sometimes I get up and move to a sitting position. My wife is concerned and I am to. Is there anything I can do to prevent this. I do eat late a lot and watch gory movies on a nightly basis. I don’t know if that means anything I’m just curious. 45/male-no health issues.

  • One time I fell asleep while driving and I woke up in a different town.

  • one time i woke up in my living room

  • Mine was a bit strange. There were 2 rooms. They are both not locked (well it was locked when I was not sleeping) I slept at my room. Then had a dream,it was like a 5 second dream. The dream was black and it said 1,2,3 swap! And then I'm not in my room anymore. I was sleeping at the other room with straight body

  • I often wake up, while sleepwalking, and im really sure that im somewhere else in the house. So I try to go back to my bed, or find the light, but im usually unable too. It”s fricking annoying. One time when I woke up, I was still in my bed, but I wanted to turn the light on ( was sitting, and couldn’t really find out, where I was supposed to lye in the bed, and didn’t know what direction I was turning. In blindness, I looked for the switch, and when I couldn’t find it, I got aggresive and desperate, and just started slamming my hand in the wall, around the switch. I even ended up damaging my phone charger, until. Finally managed to turn on the lights.

  • I'm 19 and still sleep walking

  • I was on holiday in Mexico with my parents and I was sleep walking and I got my snorkelling mask and opened the door and if my dad didn’t wake me up I would have been on the beach snorkelling 🤣🤣but I didn’t have a reaction to him waking me up ??

  • Demonic Possession

  • My grandmother told me once she was sleep walking and she woke up right in front of the stairs to go downstairs.

  • I was in the train and slept over a place but when I woke up then I found myself on somewhere else

  • I sleepwalk (my dad says I do) and when I wake up I only either wake up upside down on my bed or somewhere else on my bed not where I was originally and he says I just walk out my room.

  • Once I fell don't the stairs on to the baby gait apparently I was in jail and shaking the gate

  • one time i peed in my living riom and i thought i was peeing in toilet

  • One time i sleptwalked outside my my aparment, down the staris, on the road. My dad works overnight so i usually go with him. I told him to gimme a sec to use the bathroom and get dressed,Next thing I know, hes outside in the car, so i come outside to go in the car with him and then he starts moving the car and i yell his name, "DAD" and he all of a sudden keeps driving and I keep yelling dad to see if he would stop the car and let me in, but he keeps moving so then i start running after the car. Suprisingly, my uncle Hector (Lifesaver) was in his car driving in to the complex to get to his apartment, and he see's me,and calls my name, so i stop running after my dad in his car and look back and see my uncle calling me from his car, so then i start to run to my uncle's car and he lets me in. He asks me, "What are you doing running around with nobody watching you at this time,are you crazy,wheres mom and dad?!" I tell him,"My dad just left to work and he forgot that i was coming with him and mom, is also at work"(what i didnt notice was the time and how dark it is, and mom works the morning shift at 9:45am-10:45am Wells Fargo Banks) my uncle says "Your mom works in the morning son, and look what time it is(points to the clock in the car) and i read 2:30am or 3:30am and i feel shocked so then i start to remeber whats going on and whats happening. Then, i tell my uncle "oh my goodness, my mother is sleeping. Bye uncle hector u are a lifesaver". Without a doubt, i jump out of his car and race up the staris to my apartment in to my moms room and lay down on the bed with her and i was suprised she was awake, so i told her the WHOLE story and she said she thought the yelling was coming from my dad because she thought he got hit by a car or something, and when she heard me sling the door open and dash to her room she thought it was someone else and she felt like she was gonna get robbed or killed but it was just me

    Thank the lord that my uncle was there
    God Bless the Hero I can trust with my life and that saved me from never coming back home.
    God Bless

  • I have had a sleep bath and another time I stared at my big sister I’ve slept walked at least. 8 times

  • When I’m sleep I wake and I’m in another position of my bed

  • I fell asleep on my couch and woke up on my Kitchen floor with a butter knife next to me

  • I woke up in my dads bedroom

  • I sleep walk and I am 37 years old. One night I got up and got my car keys and headed outside but came to when I felt the cold this is the first time I ever when after my keys, it was winter of 2018. I remember the whole thing and when ever it happens it feels like I have control and I don't feel like I am asleep but when I recall the event what I was thinking at the time makes no sense.

  • I was sleeping at the plane at the middle of the flight without my seatbelt even on
    Im at the part you can go out easily
    I was actually stitting on economy class
    But soon as i woke up i was at the buisness class floor
    People and stewardess came what happened to me
    I just stand up and walked away like nothing happened

  • I woke up in my uncle's house

  • I woke up with a condom by me…

  • It’s kinda creepy

  • Idk if this was a dream but I woke up in my backyard

  • I woke up standing next to my bed with my mom coming in my room bc I was yelling her name while sleepwalking

  • I woke up on Mars

  • I sleep walk, and then started yelling on the stair. Then DUN DUN DUN ended up in the living room with my dad for how much I was thinking of him. XD

  • When I sleep walk, I make myself sandwiches. Yesterday, I woke up and with a sandwich on the floor by my bed.

  • I do weird stuff in my sleep. I turn on lights, unplug things, open windows. I wake up in weird places, but most the times I’m told about it or I just see the after math.

  • One time I sleep walked on the carpet now I’m really dirty

  • i woke up in a jail cell

  • I started sleep walking really young and remember one night I rolled off the bar on my bunk bed and fell on top of a Tonka Dump Truck, funny thing is I didn’t even feel it

  • I sleep walked before and talk while sleeping and when I was sleeping my mom said my eyes were open but she knew I wasn’t awake

  • Last night I went to sleep in my pyjamas and I woke up in my school uniform….wth

  • I sleep talk and last night I had a sleepover with my friend. He woke up a lot at night so one time when he woke up he heard me saying “no I don’t wanna play Minecraft.” The reason I probably said that is because my friends always ask me to play Minecraft and I kinda hate Minecraft so I say “I hate Minecraft” so that’s probably why I said that in my sleep. (My friend thought I was pranking him) that night was the night I found out I sleep talk Lol

  • One time I grabbed a knife in my sleep and tried to stab myself and missed…

  • One time I had cast on both of my legs. And at night I was sleep walking upstairs and my aunt heard THUMP THUMP THUMP!

  • slept on sofa woke up on the toilet seat

  • I woke up in my moms room i asked her howd i got here she said u walked here i was like wtf

  • Lol my mom told me that I was peeing in the pantry while I was sleepwalking…

  • I have on multiple occasions been seen walking up and down the stairs for several minutes.

  • I drove a vehicle in my 30s and woke up in my car a block away, I got dressed, brushed my teeth as if I were going to work

  • Its so weird to read about and see people sleepwalk because Ive never experienced it (that I know of😂) but I once woke up in the opposite direction in my bed, that was strange .

  • Once I was sleep walking and I supposedly stole from a 7/11 and I woke up in the back of a squad car, I remember this being a dream and before I woke up I was thanking god that it wasn’t real and it was real

  • I went to sleep in my bed and woke up naked sitting on my bathroom toilet…

  • I sleep walked and logged into my parents google account

  • Why do sleepwalking occur during the deepest stage of sleep and the brain waves indicating that the person is almost awake but they can still walk during sleeping?

  • I fell asleep on my couch and woke up in the bathroom mid piss

  • One time I woke up in my room

  • I woke up in the morning i had murder on my mind

  • One time I woke up in my bed…it was crazy

  • I was sleepwalking and my cousin woke me up before I almost broke our TV I looked down and my pants were missing,I looked around and found them in the fridge. What a weird night

  • I’m 15 and I sleep walk a lot the scariest thing I that has happened is when I woke up with a chunk of hair in my bed and my sister woke up and a chunk of her hair had been cut off so apparently I cut off her hair in my sleep.

  • Well, atleast they sleep unlike me I have insonmia

  • I woke up on the floor across the room from my bed once. Does that count?

  • I do this when i was drunk

  • I laugh in my sleep

  • I fell asleep in my bed then woke up in the laundry room in the pile of clothes.

  • I woke up in a house in the front door

  • One night i was only wearing a short and when i woke up i was wearing a thobe

  • I was sleep walking like 2 weeks ago and I woke up while taking a shower with my clothes on..

  • One time i woke up and was fighting my chair and screaming.

  • I had a bad sleepwalking event ladt week people thought i was drunk and that i blacked put i spent 3 days in the psych ward at the hospital..i couldn't believe what they said i did..then it hit me i was sleepwalking not blacked out….now im being forced into alcohol rehab for 1 yr.

  • I have woken up in the bathtub before with the water running

  • One time i fell asleep at a hotel i was staying at and i wole up in the hallway

  • I sleep walk my parents and my sister always tell me that but when I wake up I'm always waking up on the sofa and the stove is on

  • slept with a shirt, woke up shirtless

  • Imagine walking into a street on a highway

  • Woke up in my backyard somehow

  • I was in my room my mom said I wen to the bathroom at 1:00 and she woke up because of me WTF

  • One time when I was little I was sleepwalking and walked to the bathroom with my baby blanket in my hand, I then tried to flush it in the toilet and my mom heard so much noise so she got up and found me doing it 😂 I don’t remember ANYTHING I just know cause she told me in the morning.. 💀😂

  • I have a bunk bed I hope I don’t sleep walk. My mom said I did once oh no

  • I sleepwalked for the first time ever. I talked to my sister and made mac and cheese then went back to bed. Its weird to know you did something and don't remember doing it.

  • One time I sat up in bed and shouted "DONKEY!" I was laughing so hard😂😂😂

  • Who else watched this girls story on my story animated?

  • Don’t sleep walk but sleep talk

  • Plot twist to all sleep walkers:some one carries u to a new destination and tells u that u sleep walked

  • I went to my parents room and slapped my dad because I was dreaming that he was a monster got slapped back into reality though

  • I've always wanted to sleepwalk for some reason, I never have, the only thing I have done was years ago, dad said he came into my room and I sat up for about 5 seconds and lay back down 😂

  • I use to walk to my parents room and lay at the end of their bed. I was also told I use to just sit on my bed

  • I once woke up on the ground, in the middle of the living room with my hand at my piledriver.

    Atleast i woke up before everyone else in the house😂

  • i slept in the sofa then i woke up on my mom and dad's Master bed room and they said i was walking and my eyes are CLOSED

  • I slept walked to the bathroom and thought I was pissing in the toilet turns out I was in the hallway pissing on the carpet I woke up to my mom yelling at me.

  • Slept in my bed, woke up in my bed. DUDE ITS FREAKING SCARY

  • My fiancé just slept walked naked in his new shared flat! He went into a girls room he didn’t even know and freaked everyone out! Obviously. He is really embarrassed now. Talk about first impressions 🤦‍♀️ Honestly, I’m so annoyed cuz now he is all depressed and If I was there I would have stoped that from happening. I’m trying to understand how this works, or how it could happen, cuz I never knew anyone who slept walked before and he never did it the whole 4 years while I was there with him!! But he said he used to do it as a kid a lot and sometimes he would pee on other peoples beds! Thank God that didn’t happen. I think maybe the new environment must have triggered it. I find sleep walking so freakin strange.

  • so this is how i wake up in my bed when i sleep on my couch..

  • I walked downstairs crying because 'there was loads of socks on my bed' there wasnt idk what happened lol

  • When i wake up i suddenly woke up in the fantasy world

  • I once fell asleep on the left side of the bed and woke up on the right side 😭😭

  • One time I woke up wearing clothes I never slept with….

  • My mom said i was sleepwalking and opened the door to the outside lol

  • The most thing ever happen to me was my mom told me that a few years ago when I was sleeping she told me to put my shoes up and I end up putting them in the fridge and I left them there for an hour and I don’t remember none of that happening😂😂

  • One time I was sleep walking and I tried to piss in the bin

  • Once i woke up in the shower with clotes on all wet 😉 First i dodnt realize it was weird showering with clothes on so thought like WtF like 10 vmins later

  • One time I was sleeping, and I woke up sitting in the side of my bed

  • Yo I got one of those seizure sleep walks

  • One time I slept on my bed then i woke up in my closet

  • I sleep walked multiple times crazy right I also sleeped talked :0

  • "I'm completely made of bosoms"

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