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Parasomnias

Written by Kate Kellaway

Parasomnias are a range of sleep disorders that might sound amusing, but can be terrifying for those who experience them.

Also known as abnormal arousals, parasomnias cause certain body functions that are usually confined to our waking hours, such as walking and talking, to emerge during sleep. Most parasomnias are thought to be the result of abnormal activation of the nervous system during sleep, and are more common in children, who will often outgrow them. While parasomnias do intrude on sleep, they differ from other sleep disorders because they are not generally associated with insomnia or excessive daytime sleepiness.

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