My daughter sleepwalks. Sleepwalking is a behavior disorder that originates during sleep and results in walking or other behaviors while asleep. It’s not a nightly thing for my daughter, but it sure keeps life interesting. Sometimes it’ll happen a few times a week and sometimes not for weeks or months.
Sleepwalking is actually common in kids. Things that can bring on an episode of sleepwalking are lack of sleep, irregular sleep schedules, illness or fever, some medicines, and stress. Kids that sleepwalk are also more likely to be bedwetters, have sleep apnea, or night terrors. You shouldn’t wake a sleepwalking child, but rather guide them back to bed. Even though their eyes are open, they see differently. They may think they’re in a different room or house.
Sleepwalkers may sleep talk, scream, have violent attacks when being awoken, and have little or no memory of the event. Sleepwalking has 3 behavior categories: Harmless – sitting up and talking. Potentially dangerous – wandering outside or down stairs. Inappropriate – peeing in a closet. Although there is no cure for sleepwalking, kids usually outgrow it as the amount of deep sleep decreases. Improving sleep schedules and reducing stress are ways to help reduce sleepwalking episodes.
I’m not sure when my daughter first started sleepwalking, I just know she’s done it for a while. She has talked in her sleep, wandered around the house, peed on the floor, all kinds of random crazy things. Although she wandered the house, we’ve been lucky enough that she hasn’t tried to leave the house or hurt heself or someone else. I remember waking up one night to her standing at my bedside staring at me. It really freaked me out, then she just stood there and peed all over the floor. She had wandered down the hallway to my room thinking she was in the bathroom. Another time she had woken up suddenly from a deep sleep and went into my sons room, busting through the door like the police, turned on the light, and started having a full on conversation with herself. I was awake to see it all.
The first time it happened was a bit scary. We had no idea she was sleepwalking. She wandered into my room and just stood near the doorway staring at me. She didn’t respond to anything and in fact wasn’t actually awake. We’ve been very lucky that she hasn’t tried to wander off or hurt anyone. We do have plans and precautions in place in case it happens though. It keeps life interesting never knowing when it’ll happen or what will happen when it does.