At first mention of the phrase sleeping disorder, the thing that would probably pop out of your mind is insomnia, or a condition whereby a person is experiencing difficulty in maintaining or initiating sleep. However, the more common sleeping disorder, which affects the very young to the very old, is actually called parasomnia. All of us, at one time, have actually experienced at least one type of parasomnia in our lifetime.

Uncovering The Truth About Parasomnia

According to the American Heritage Dictionary, parasomnia is defined as any type of sleep disorder that commonly inhibits sleep. Parasomnia can either occur during non rapid-eye movement sleep, NREM for short; or rapid-eye movement sleep, more commonly known as REM. Therefore, a person who has parasomnia may experience sleep disruption or arousal when he or she is in a simultaneous stage of being partially asleep and awake. The sleep problems can be passive, such as talking while sleeping or bedwetting; or dangerous, such as sexually assaulting or harming other people.

What Causes Parasomnia?

Biological factors, depression, and stress are some of the most common causes of parasomnia. People who have problems and are plagued with guilt, tension and anxiety are believed to be at risk of experiencing various sleeping disorders, most of which can fall under the category of parasomnia. Some experts also believe that heredity plays a huge role in some of the types of parasomnia, including bedwetting, sleep talking and teeth grinding.

Although numerous studies have already been conducted to get a definitive answer to what really causes parasomnia, sleep experts were still unable to come up with a sufficient explanation as to the cause of some sleep disorders. One thing that experts agree on is that parasomnia sets off, in an inopportune moment, one or several physiological systems while a person is in the sleeping and waking cycle.

Common Types Of Parasomnia


This type of parasomnia, which is also known as Sleep Enuresis, is more common in children. Usually, a person suffering from this problem is incapable of controlling his or her urinary functions during sleep. A lot of people who experience sleep enuresis claim that they thought they were dreaming about urinating or relieving themselves.

Bruxism During Sleep

Teeth grinding, or what is called sleep bruxism, is quite common. Usually, a person who exhibits this disorder involuntarily clenches or grinds his or her teeth at night. Soreness of the jaw and faster wear and tear of teeth are some of the effects of this nocturnal habit. One way to remedy the situation is by wearing a mouth guard during sleep.

Confusional Arousals

Basically, when you wake up in the middle of the night and feel temporary confusion and alienation, then you have just experienced confusional arousal. For some people, however, this sleep disorder may also affect their short-term memory and reaction time.

Nightmares or Night Terrors

Nightmares, although fairly common, are considered as a sleep disorder because a person who suddenly wakes up in the middle of his or her sleep because of vivid frightful events usually find it difficult to sleep again. This type of parasomnia is more common in children.


This type of parasomnia, which is called REM Sleep Behavior Disorder, is actually the acting out of dangerous and violent dreams. Thus, a person who has RBD may produce sounds or display bodily movements that demonstrate his or her dream. Some people who are suffering from RBD really beat their sleep partner or do violent acts against other people while they are asleep.


This sleep disorder is more commonly known as sleep talking. Somnabulism frequently occurs during the middle of a sleep-wake stage. Most of those who talk in their sleep do not remember that they have uttered words, phrases or even sentences while they were asleep.

You really do not need to undergo treatment or medication in most cases of parasomnia. More often than not, these sleep problems disappear in time. However, if your problem is already getting worse, interfering with your sleep, and are hurting other people, then you immediately need to see a doctor.

If you are just having difficulty in finding sleep, you can take sleeping aids. One product that will help you with your sleep problems is Sedamine. For more information about this supplement, visit

Author's Bio: 

Sharon Bell is an avid health and fitness enthusiast and published author. Many of her insightful articles can be found at the premiere online news magazine