Navigation Links
Sleepwalking in Adults More Common Than Thought
Date:5/15/2012

By Maureen Salamon
HealthDay Reporter

MONDAY, May 14 (HealthDay News) -- Sleepwalkers on TV and in movies are often played for drama or laughs, but the phenomenon is surprisingly common in American households, a large, new study suggests.

In what they said is the first research in three decades on sleepwalking prevalence in the United States, scientists from Stanford University School of Medicine found that about 3.6 percent of U.S. adults are prone to sleepwalking, a higher proportion than previously thought. Nocturnal wandering is also tied to certain psychiatric conditions such as depression, anxiety and obsessive-compulsive disorder.

"It's probably more common than we realize, which doesn't surprise me," said Dr. B. Tucker Woodson, professor and chief of the division of sleep medicine at Medical College of Wisconsin in Milwaukee, who wasn't involved in the study. "As clinicians we often see the cases in which it's a problem, so if the occasional sleepwalking episode is not causing any problems, it tends not to be something people seek medical attention for."

The study is published May 15 in the journal Neurology.

Study author Dr. Maurice Ohayon, a professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at Stanford, and his colleagues interviewed about 19,000 people aged 18 and older from 15 states, questioning them about their sleeping habits, general health, medications taken and mental disorders. Those who reported sleepwalking were asked about the frequency, duration, family history and any inappropriate or potentially dangerous behaviors during sleep.

Nearly 30 percent of participants reported having sleepwalked at least once in their lifetime, while nearly one-third of the 3.6 percent who had done so within the previous year said they sleepwalked twice or more each month. Family history was a strong predictor, with about 30 percent of those who sleepwalked at least once in the previous year having family members who also experienced the disorder.

"When you have one episode of sleepwalking per month at minimum, you are disturbed by the disorder, no doubt," Ohayon said. "More than once a month is a lot of episodes in a year. It could be harmful for them ... because they don't have the normal reactions. So it could be a big accident coming, but happily that's very rare."

Participants who had experienced depression or obsessive-compulsive disorder were 3.5 times and 3.9 times more likely to sleepwalk, respectively, than people without the conditions, the study found. Those who took antidepressants known as SSRIs, or selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, were three times more likely to sleepwalk twice a month or more.

Ohayon cautioned that it's not clear whether the psychiatric conditions themselves or drugs used to treat them were responsible for the heightened sleepwalking incidence.

"An association doesn't mean you have a causality link," he said. "It means at maximum, the SSRIs are triggering sleepwalking, but are not the cause. That is clear."

Participants using over-the-counter sleeping pills had a higher chance of reporting sleepwalking at least twice a month, while gender and race weren't associated with the disorder and it seemed to lessen with age.

Ohayon and Woodson agreed that longitudinal research needs to be done that can examine the long-term factors contributing to sleepwalking, which wasn't possible in this cross-sectional study.

"Sleepwalking is a really interesting phenomenon in that it represents the brain in different states -- part of the brain, in a sense, is awake, and part is asleep," Woodson said. "We're learning that other disorders may have similar brain activity . . . with mixed states of wake and sleep. I don't think we understand them all that well. Most are not associated with serious medical consequences, but obviously sometimes they can be."

More information

The U.S. National Library of Medicine has more about sleepwalking.

SOURCES: Maurice Ohayon, M.D., D.Sc., Ph.D., professor, psychiatry and behavioral sciences, Stanford University School of Medicine, Palo Alto, Calif.; B. Tucker Woodson, M.D., professor, and chief, division of sleep medicine, Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee; May 15, 2012, Neurology


'/>"/>
Copyright©2010 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Childhood parasomnias such as sleepwalking and bedwetting may persist into adolescence
2. Employment Prospects Dim for Young Adults With Autism
3. Many Young Adults at Risk of Skin Cancer: CDC
4. WSU researches patterns of heavy alcohol use and life commitments in at-risk young adults
5. Researchers determine vitamin D blood level for reducing major medical risks in older adults
6. Anti-tobacco TV ads help adults stop smoking, study finds
7. Callahan honored for improving older adults health in their doctors offices
8. Gay Adults Rejected by Parents Have Worse Health, Study Finds
9. Out-of-hand tree nut consumption associated with better diet quality in children and adults
10. EKG Heart Test May Predict Risk in Older Adults
11. Infection Might Raise Blood Clot Risk for Older Adults: Study
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Sleepwalking in Adults More Common Than Thought 
(Date:9/22/2017)... ... September 22, 2017 , ... Silicon Valley startup Enke Life ... go. Their electric toothbrushes aggressively attack oral bacteria by reducing dental plaque and ... leading edge Enke technology with a premium timeless design, they want to redefine ...
(Date:9/22/2017)... CA (PRWEB) , ... September 22, 2017 , ... ... groceries, wearable, and more products at customers’ doorstep. According to Smart Mart, customers ... Mart has stated to offer wearable, and customers can find clothing at discounted ...
(Date:9/21/2017)... CA (PRWEB) , ... September 21, 2017 , ... With ... so fun and easy to do. Users can select from up to two layers ... with a click of a mouse all within Final Cut Pro X. ...
(Date:9/21/2017)... ... 21, 2017 , ... SABRE is raising awareness about personal safety with a ... of November. , The Chicago, Illinois, based self-defense brand has been waiting for an ... ease of taking their personal safety into their own hands. , The ads focus ...
(Date:9/21/2017)... ... September 21, 2017 , ... Hair restoration surgery ... survey conducted by the International Society of Hair Restoration Surgery (ISHRS). ... rose 60 percent, with 635,189 procedures performed in 2016. , "Like other ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:9/13/2017)... OrthoAtlanta has been named the official orthopedic and sports ... the 2018 College Football Playoff (CFP) National Championship to be ... Atlanta, Georgia . OrthoAtlanta is proud to ... in many activities leading up to, and including the national ... OrthoAtlanta ...
(Date:9/9/2017)... , Sept. 8, 2017 ... Mobile MRI Unit coming to Washington DC ... When: Tuesday, September 12 th – Monday, September 18 ... D.C. offering free MRI brain scans to the public.Where:  ... be parked at 501 K Street NW, Washington, D.C.What:BTF brings its nationwide ...
(Date:9/7/2017)... nearly two decades, New Life Agency has been committed to providing the ... Life Agency announces a powerful three-way partnership designed to deliver substantial savings ... ... http://www.schrafts2.com/ (PRNewsfoto/PharmaCareCard) ... http://pharmacarecard.com/ (PRNewsfoto/PharmaCareCard) ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: