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Sleepwalking - Research Paper Example

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Sleepwalking Name Sleepwalking Sleepwalking is a psychological problem that has been given utmost importance, and used in many literary pieces such as in the prominent play written by Shakespeare, Macbeth, where a very popular character, Lady Macbeth, experiences sleepwalking…
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Download file to see previous pages Sometimes it may also lead to nonsensical talking while a person is sleepwalking. The sleepwalker’s eyes are also known to be open but have no recognition to be really seeing, as they have a glassy unfocused look in them. This kind of activity is most commonly observed during either middle childhood or young adolescence. Fifteen percent of the children from the ages of 4-12 experience sleepwalking. It is noted that most of these children resolve this behavior during late adolescence. Moreover, 10% of these sleepwalkers start their sleepwalking behavior as teenagers. It is also noted that some sleepwalkers may inherit this behavior genetically (Moorcroft 228). Every person experiences non-rapid eye movement (NREM) sleep, and rapid eye movement (REM) sleep. NREM has four stages and begins when a person starts to sleep. After the fourth stage, it goes to the REM sleep, which is when a person’s eyes are rapidly moving inside their closed eyes and so is experiencing dreams. The REM cycle is an important cycle as it is associated with producing hormones which aid in proper metabolism and growth of a person. Each of these cycles, that is the NREM’s four stages and REM, last for 90-100 minutes and then repeats all over till a person is awake (Coon, Mitterer, Talbot, and Vanchella 190). Sleepwalking however, occurs at some point in the third or fourth stage in either cycle. As this is a time when a person is deeply asleep, sleepwalking is barely witnessed in naps or when a person sleeps for a short amount of time. No memory of having experienced any particular behavior is remembered by the sleepwalker (Butkov and Teofilo 141). There are several causes of sleepwalking some of which can be associated with genetics. Sleepwalking is observed to be more frequent within identical twins. It also has a ten times increased probability to occur in someone whose first-degree relative has experienced sleepwalking. Then, there are psychological factors as well. It is more common in children as they experience greater amount of slow deep sleep and so makes them increasingly likely to suffer sleepwalking as compared to adults or teens. Different environmental factors can be associated with sleepwalking such as sleep deprivation, stress, fever, disorganized sleep schedules, magnesium deficiency, alcohol intoxication, or the usage of different drugs such as specific sedatives (medicines that trigger sleep), minor tranquilizers, stimulants, neuroleptics, antihistamines etc. Also, sleepwalking frequency is increased during menstruation or pregnancy. Certain medical conditions are associated with sleepwalking sometimes such as fever, Arrhythmias, Gastroesophageal reflux, night time seizures, night time asthma, obstructive sleep apneas, etc. Different psychiatric disorders, such as posttraumatic stress disorder, multiple personality disorder, panic attacks are also connected to sleepwalking (Porth 596). There are some major symptoms of sleepwalking. Patients appear to be dazed and clumsy during their episodes and may appear to either be running around agitatedly or walking quietly around the room. Most often the sleepwalker’s eyes are noted to be open, with an unfocused glassy look as the person roams about the area. Prior to contrary belief, they do not extend their arms while sleepwalking. If questioned during the state, the responses are either slow ones with thoughts which are ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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