When you hear about sleep walking, you wonder how real it could be. Especially if you don’t know anyone who has ever had experiences with sleep walking. And even so, you may still doubt it as it sounds like something that others can exaggerate about unless it happens to you.
However, it is more common than you would think as it is very real and it also affects about 15 percent of the population. When you think about how the world has seven billion people, that percentage means a whole lot of people that experience sleep walking.
Is Sleep Walking A Medical Condition?
Sleep walking is definitely a medical condition known as somnambulism as it is a type of parasomnia. Parasomnia is categorized as a cluster of sleep disorders that cause you to do things that you normally would not do when you are sleeping. That includes sleep talking, wetting the bed, and sleep walking.
The reason that parasomnias do happen is that there is a dissociation of wake and sleep that is incomplete. In other words, the brain is half asleep and half awake but at the same time, it does not mean that sleep walkers are not in a deep sleep. In fact, sleep walkers do not really even remember leaving the bed because of being in a deep sleep.
And children tend to be prone to sleep walking more than adults and it usually has to do with genetics playing a role. This could have to do with the fact that children don’t have deep REM sleep and their sleep is more slow-wave. This is often when sleep walking begins. However, many children that do experience the condition end up usually growing out of it. But there are some children that do not, unfortunately. And sometimes adults that do sleep walk may have never had the condition when they were children.
What Can Cause Adults To Sleep Walk?
Adults that suffer from the condition often have lifestyle factors playing a role. Caffeine and alcohol can be triggers as well as using other stimulants that are used right before bed. That can play a very significant role in sleep walking. In addition to that, some conditions as well as medications can also worsen the problem.
Therefore, when you are sleep walking, you are not getting enough shut-eye, as you are having a poor quality of sleep since you are in that half-awake and half-sleep state. Even if you get a full recommended eight hours of sleep and you are sleep walking sometime during that time, you are not getting a good quality of sleep. You are much better off having five solid hours of excellent quality of sleep than eight hours of where you are getting a poor quality sleep which results in sleep walking.
In fact, if you don’t get a good quality of sleep, you will end up dealing with consequences that result from not getting good quality sleep.
What Happens To Your Body If You Don’t Get Enough Sleep?
You need to sleep in order for your body to repair itself as it goes through a lot of cellular and tissue damage while being up and productive during the day. If you don’t get the right amount of shut-eye to help your body repair and heal itself, then it will result in many ailments later on.
Lack of sleep will have a negative impact on your mental and cognitive functioning as it can affect your memory, concentration levels, mental health, and can increase your chances of developing Alzheimer’s later on. Your physical health will also be impacted as you could easily face obesity as a lack of sleep can have a negative impact on your metabolism functioning. You also will crave sugary sweets, and you will also end up being more prone to diseases such as diabetes, cardiovascular ailments, and cancer. This is why it is critical that you get as much quality sleep as you can.
This means to change your lifestyle for the better by not drinking caffeine after 2 pm, and not drinking alcohol within three hours of going to sleep. Getting proper exercise during the day is also important so you can sleep well at night, and limit your sugar intake. Also, put away screens within two hours of going to bed and read a book instead. If you can get many many nights of decent quality sleep, then you will only increase your odds of being in good health.