How to Sleep Soundly Despite Your Partner Talking in Their Sleep

Parasomnia, a term that encompasses a variety of disruptive behaviors that interfere with sleep, is a common issue affecting a large portion of the U.S. population. In fact, a third of adults in the U.S. do not get the recommended amount of sleep, leading to a myriad of health problems such as depression and Type 2 diabetes. One well-known parasomnia that can affect not only the individual but also their bed partner is somniloquy, or talking in one’s sleep.

According to the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, somniloquy can affect up to 65% of the population at some point in their lives. While on its own it may not be harmful, it can be disruptive to bed partners and may indicate an underlying sleep disorder if it increases in frequency or is accompanied by other symptoms such as limb movements or daytime sleepiness.

Dr. Carlos Schenck, a senior staff psychiatrist, recommends some strategies for bed partners to cope with a sleep-talking individual. Using a white noise generator, earplugs, or noise-canceling headphones can help drown out the sleep talking and ensure a better night’s sleep. Additionally, adjusting sleeping positions, such as avoiding sleeping on one’s back, can also mitigate the effects of somniloquy.

Identifying triggers for sleep talking, such as stress, alcohol, sleep deprivation, or changes in sleeping patterns, can also help manage the condition. By being considerate of their partner and taking proactive steps to address sleep-talking triggers, individuals who talk in their sleep can improve their quality of sleep for themselves and their bed partners.

In conclusion, while sleep talking may seem harmless on the surface, it can be a sign of underlying sleep disorders and should be monitored closely. By implementing simple strategies and being mindful of triggers, individuals and their bed partners can navigate the challenges of somniloquy and enjoy a more restful night’s sleep.

(Source: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC)

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