What is sleepwalking?

Also known as: sleepwalking, somnambulism.

Sleepwalking is a condition in which a child gets out of bed and walks around while sleeping. It’s often relatively harmless and is usually outgrown over time, though it can pose a risk to the individual and others.


What causes sleepwalking?

Sleepwalking tends to run in families. It also can occur along with substance abuse, apnea, certain medications, underlying medical conditions, stress, fever and sleep deprivation.


What are the symptoms of sleepwalking?

The individual who sleepwalks may be difficult to arouse during the episode. He or she will often have no memory of it later on. Sleep terrors or problems during the day are also common with sleep walking. The person may have no memory of the event later on.


What are sleepwalking care options?

Most cases of sleepwalking in children go away on their own over time. In problematic cases, medication, therapy, counseling, treating underlying medical conditions and anticipatory awakenings can all be helpful.


Reviewed by: Mercedes Bello, MD

This page was last updated on: 1/29/2019 3:21:13 PM

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