The Sleepwalker Manual: Why Do People Sleepwalk?

October 31, 2018
Bumping into a sleepwalking family member in the dead of the night may seem like a hackneyed scene from a random horror flick, but what causes sleepwalking, have you ever thought about that? While sleepwalking in itself sounds eerie, as usual there is more to it than the zombie-walk on the surface. Here are some of the causes forwarded by researchers, which will hopefully help you the next time you encounter an unsuspecting sleepwalker.

Sleepwalking or somnambulism, is seen to occur during the slow-wave sleep (which we refer to as deep sleep, generally), and it can last from 30 seconds to 30 minutes. While sleepwalking is harmless, the cases vary, and in some instances, there were records of the sleepwalkers engaging in violent acts, which is what makes this sleep disorder extremely fascinating. One of the reason as to why people sleepwalk, maybe attributed to a delay in the maturity of the central nervous system, as pointed out by some researchers. Sometimes, even sleep deprivation comes into play in some cases, as well as environmental factors. Again, the genetic factor cannot be ruled out, as according to a previously conducted study, which involved a family of sleepwalkers, a section of chromosome 20 was seen to be at fault. If statistics from another study are taken into consideration, it can be seen that 45% children who sleepwalked, one parent had this habit, and if both the parents were somnambulist, then 60% children acquired it. Again, it must be noted that sleepwalking is more common in children than in adults, and sometimes sleepwalking in adults might be an indication of other psychological disorders.

It may seem absurd now, but in the past, one theory even suggested that sleepwalking was simply a person acting out the dreams! Now, it might have made for a spooky tale set inside some ancient castle in the middle of some abandoned forest, but it is a matter of the intricacies of the human mind according to modern science, and we must keep calm until we stumble upon the next big revelation.

Post Written by - Lopamudra

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