For most of us, sleepwalking and other parasomnias mostly show up on TV or when people are on the spot and need an excuse for their midnight snacking. But for people who have these sleep disorders, the conditions are both disruptive and potentially dangerous. And the currently available treatments often involve drugs that have serious side effects.
What Are Parasomnias?
Parasomnias are a broad category of sleep disorders in which people act or feel in ways different from their waking selves. People are not themselves during these states, and as a result they may do things that hurt themselves or others.
Usually, parasomnias are divided into three broad, nonexclusive categories:
- Non-Rapid-Eye-Movement-Related (NREM) Parasomnias
- REM-Related Parasomnias
- Other Parasomnias
Because NuCalm works with the autonomic nervous system, and the autonomic nervous system is most important in NREM parasomnias, that’s the category we will talk about most.
Plus, the NREM parasomnias are the ones that most people think of, such as:
- Sleep sex
- Sleep-related eating disorder
- Sleep terrors
- Confusional arousal
- Restless leg syndrome
In fact, there are many types of complex behaviors that can be involved in parasomnias. They might include things like sleep talking, sleep driving, and even sleep texting.
What causes these parasomnias? The answer isn’t quite clear, but it seems that abnormal function of the autonomic nervous system is involved.
The Autonomic Nervous System and Parasomnias
What is the role of the autonomic nervous system in parasomnias? It’s unclear. However, many people with parasomnias experience abnormal function of the autonomic nervous system, either while sleeping or during the day.
For example, in sleep terrors, people experience a wide range of sympathetic nervous system responses, as part of the “fight or flight” response triggered by this experience. This can include a rapid heart rate, rapid breathing, sweating, and flushed skin. In this and other NREM parasomnias, the autonomic nervous system activation precedes the unusual behaviors and sensations.
In some parasomnias, such as restless leg syndrome, researchers have shown that people experience autonomic nervous system disruption during the day, including a tendency to high blood pressure and reduced activity of the parasympathetic nervous system.
How NuCalm Could Help with Parasomnias
NuCalm has not been tested or approved as a treatment for parasomnias. However, there are good reasons why it might be effective for helping people control these sleep disorders.
First, there’s the fact that NuCalm can help regulate the autonomic nervous system. In particular, it can help foster parasympathetic dominance, improving the strength of the parasympathetic response in people who might have reduced responses.
In a more general way, NuCalm helps control some of the triggers that lead to parasomniac events. People tend to experience parasomnias when they’re stressed. By controlling stress, it could help people avoid parasomnias. In addition, poor sleep quality and sleep deprivation can increase the likelihood of parasomnia. NuCalm can help people get more and better sleep so they might potentially avoid parasomnia.
NuCalm is a great tool for helping people get quality, restful sleep. In that way, it can definitely help people with parasomnias as it has helped many others.