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Cape Coral

126 Del Pravo Blvd. North Suite 106 Cape Coral, FL 33909​

Lehigh Acres

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WHAT ARE PARASOMNIAS
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Table of Contents

KEY POINTS

Parasomnias are unwanted physical events or experiences that happen while falling asleep, sleeping, or waking up.

Parasomnias involve sleep-related behaviors and experiences that you can’t control.

Parasomnias may include strange movements, behaviors, emotions, perceptions or dreams.

Parasomnias occur when aspects of sleep and wakefulness overlap.

You usually remain asleep during the event and may have no memory that it occurred.

Am I at Risk ?

Excess body weight is the leading risk factor for obstructive sleep apnea, but thin people can have sleep apnea too. The risk also increases if you have a large neck, tongue, tonsils or jaw. Sleep apnea is more common in men than in women, but the risk for women increases during and after menopause. Sleep apnea is common in people who have high blood pressure. It also occurs frequently in people who have heart disease, stroke, a mood disorder or Type 2 diabetes.

GENERAL OVERVIEW

Parasomnias may include abnormal movements, behaviors, emotions, perceptions or dreams. The behaviors may be complex and appear purposeful to others, but you are asleep while the behavior is taking place. Often you will have no memory that it occurred.
If you have a parasomnia, you may fnd it hard to sleep through the night. Some parasomnias involve incomplete arousal from deep sleep. Others emerge during rapid eye movement (REM) sleep. Types of parasomnias are:

Confusional Arousals

Mental confusion or confused behavior that occurs while you are in bed.

Nightmare Disorder

You have disturbing dreams that cause distress or bedtime anxiety.

Sleep Related Eating Disorder

Out-of-control eating that occurs while you are only partially awake.

Exploding Head Syndrome

You imagine a sudden, loud noise or explosion in your head while falling asleep or waking up.

REM Sleep Behavior Disorder

You act out violent, action-packed dreams while you are asleep.

Sleep Related Hallucinations

You imagine seeing something or someone in your room while falling asleep or waking up.

Recurrent Isolated Sleep Paralysis

You are unable to move your body as you are falling asleep or waking up.

Sleepwalking

You get out of bed and walk while sleeping.

Bedwetting

You urinate in your bed while sleeping.

Sleep Terrors

You sit up in bed with a loud cry or fearful scream.

TREATMENTS

Treatment options vary depending on the type of parasomnia. These options may include behavioral therapy or medication. Your sleep doctor will recommend the best treatment option for you.

Tips

Practicing healthy sleep habits can help reduce the risk of parasomnias:

Keep a consistent sleep schedule.

Adults should sleep 7 hours or more every night.

Make your bedroom quiet and relaxing.

Don’t eat a large meal before bedtime.

Exercise regularly and maintain a healthy diet.

Don’t drink caffeine in the late afternoon or evening.

Don’t drink alcohol before bedtime.

Reduce your fluid intake before bedtime.

Next Steps

ACKNOWLEDGEMENT: CONTENT DEVELOPED BY THE AMERICAN ACADEMY OF SLEEP MEDICINE

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