Sleep talking also is known as somniloquy. It is a kind of sleep disorder (parasomnia). Parasomnia referred to as an abnormal behavior during sleep and in which a person talks without his knowledge. Sleep talking includes complete gibberish, mumbling, complicated dialogues, or monologues. While speaking, the words could be very clear and that makes complete sense, but sometimes doesn’t have any meaning. Sleep talking tone can be loud or low.
Most of the time, the person who is talking in sleep doesn’t know what they are talking about. The language they are using in sleep talking is different from the one they use when awake. For many people, sleep talking does not last for a long time. Mostly, Young children and Male adults are affected by this disease.
Sleep talking is more common for a child and approximately 50% of children having this problem but usually don’t last long and often go away by the early teen years. As per the report, only 4% of adults affected by this. Most sleep-talkers are genetically predisposed however the situation is precipitated by means of environmental factors.
Sleep talking can occur via itself as a condition. However, it also includes a symptom of different snoozing issues. These sound asleep issues consist of sleep terror and obstructive sleep apnea. Sleep apnea is a doubtlessly extreme sleep disorder in which breathing repeatedly stops and starts.
Sleep Talking: Content
Most of the utterances in sleep talking are usually not easy to understand. However, when spoken clearly the content can be about current events or past events. In general, the law assumes that sleep talkers talk when they are not conscious. Consequently, the content is sleep talk is admissible in court.
Sleep talking, unlike sleepwalking, is not harmful. A pure event of talking in sleep does not affect the talker’s sleep patterns. In fact, insomnia- a common symptom of sleeping disorders- is not reported. However, it may cause the person to be afraid of going to bed and also wake up early. If this happens, the person can feel drowsy during the day. The biggest negative effect is an embarrassment. In addition, the sleeping partner may find this offensive.
Cause of Sleep Talking
This parasomnia can occur at REM or the non-REM stage. However, it is mostly seen at the transition stage between REM and non-REM. In light sleep (non-REM) the conversation are clear and make more sense. In REM (deep sleep), the talk is unclear and involves moaning sounds. It is good to note that sleep talking is not always related to dreaming. Some the trigger factors include:
- Stress and depression.
- Medical and narcotic drugs.
- Fever as seen in bacterial diseases.
- Mental and psychological problems.
Treatment for Sleep Talking
When it occurs by itself without any underlying condition, treatment is never necessary as the sleeping pattern is not affected. In addition, it is not harmful. Treatment can be sought if the events of sleep talking last for more than one month.
In most cases however, talking in sleep is a symptom of another condition. By treating the underlying sleep disorders, the regularity of sleep talks go down. Since it is associated with stress and depression, these two conditions should be explored and if need be, treated.
It is important that the sleep talker is understood by the bed or roommates. Making fun of the talks can lead to insomnia as the person may be afraid if sleeping. In addition, the thing said in sleep talks should not be take seriously as the person is unconscious. The bed partner should get ear plugs so that they are protected from the noise.