How to Prevent Sleepwalking

Sleepwalking is common among small children. As children grow up into adults they do not sleep walk, but in some cases even adults have the problem of sleepwalking. Sleepwalking behaviors are sometimes harmless. Sometimes children start wandering outside, open doors, etc. which can be dangerous. Whether they are harmless or harmful it is necessary that you know how to prevent sleepwalking.

When we sleep our brain passes through four stages of sleep, stage 1, stage 2, stage 3 and stage 4. The first stage is called a light sleep period, second stage is called consolidated sleep period and the third sleep period is called as consolidate sleep periods while the fourth sleep period is called REM or rapid eye movement. We pass through many cycles of sleep at night. We usually sleepwalk during the first three stages of sleep, but it will occur only once in a night.

Sleepwalking can be treated by medical treatment. Doctors may advise you to follow prolonged medications if you consult them, but there are things you can do to prevent sleepwalking from occurring frequently.

Tips to prevent sleepwalking:

  • Limit stress and reduce anxiety to prevent sleepwalking. If you are stressed out, you may suffer from frequent sleepwalking problems. Try some methods to help you reduce stress.
  • Do not have your meals late at night or go to bed immediately after having meals. Intake of fluids should also be limited at night times. Have your meals at least 2 hours prior to sleep.
  • Get plenty of quality sleep. Sleeping for at least 6 to 7 hours at night is recommended by doctors to give your body enough amount of rest.
  • Do not engage yourself in any kind of aggressive activities during the day. This can elevate your emotions at night when you are sleeping.
  • People who drink also have the problem of sleepwalking, because alcohol directly enters into the central nervous system and deprives you of the quality sleep, you should otherwise get.
  • Avoid doing heavy workout before going to sleep. If you want to exercise before going to sleep, then do mild stretching exercises and meditate for some time before going to sleep. This will help you relax and flush out all the tensions and negative thoughts from your mind.
  • Listen to slow music, read books before going to sleep.
  • Avoid exposure to any kind of auditory stimuli such as loud music, engaging in arguments with family members, etc before going to sleep.
  • Do not watch movies that will elevate your emotions at night.
  • Maintain a pleasant atmosphere in the bedroom.
  • Maintain a record of the timings wherein your child goes through the sleepwalking episodes. If you notice that sleepwalking occurs at a constant time, then set an alarm few minutes prior to this time so that the child gets up from sleep at this time.
  • Follow regular patterns of sleep and wake up. Go to sleep at the same time every night and wake up in the morning at the same time. Going to bed early at night and waking up early in the morning is a good practice.

Safety precautions to protect sleepwalkers from any kind of injury:

Sleepwalkers are unaware of the fact that they are walking, unless someone tells them about it the next day. They don’t even know what they are doing while they are walking. They may sometimes injure themselves. Therefore, you need to take some precautions at night if someone in your house has the problem of sleepwalking.

  • Do not let sleepwalkers sleep on the bed to prevent them from injury. Make them sleep on the ground. They may fall down the bed and injure themselves if they sleep on the bed.
  • Lock the windows and doors properly at night. Use child safety locks or special locks that cannot be easily opened by the sleepwalkers.
  • Do not keep any pointed or breakable things in their bed room or near their bed.
  • Install safety gates in your house.
  • Place an alarm bell at your child’s door so that it rings when your child opens the door.
  • If possible co-sleep with the sleepwalkers so that you can monitor them and prevent them from any major injury at night.
  • Do not wake up while they are sleepwalking. This might scare them and can be dangerous to them, instead, guide them slowly to the bed.

If you are unable to deal with the sleep walking problem and it leads to some serious disturbances, you should consult a doctor for this. Before seeking help from the doctor try the preventive tips given above. They are very helpful for any age group of people.

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