Whoops! Sorry, I woke you up. (Part 2)

Still wondering if you and your partner are sleep compatible? We’re going to discuss a few more issues that could disturb your partner during sleep.


We discussed the basic details of REM sleep last week, but we also wanted to point out a rather rare syndrome regarding REM this week. REM Sleep Behavior Disorder (RSBD), is marked by active movements during dreaming sleep, sometimes resulting in hitting of a bed partner, jumping from bed, running into walls, and crashing out of windows even! It is most often seen in males over 70, and you most definitely do not want to share a bed with anyone suffering from this condition.

A shocking, and sometimes amusing, mid-sleep disturbance are those noticing penile erections in their sleep partners. This tumescence is a common byproduct of REM sleep, which occurs every 90 minutes. Again, this is the stage in which 85% of dreams take place, however the erections may be completely unrelated to sex.

There is also a newly discovered sleep disorder called sexomnia, wherein people engage in sexual activity while remaining asleep. Certain behaviors that are normally taboo or not pleasurable when awake may occur during sleep/ Alcohol and sleep deprivation have been indicated as major triggers to unwanted sleepsex experiences. Treatments for this are available.

Sleep apnea is a common sleep disorder that may have serious or even fatal consequences. It occurs when respiratory passages become too constricted during sleep and airflow is completely shut off, causing breathing to stop for up to a minute or longer. Gasping for air, people awaken suddenly in order to resume breathing. This can happen up to 700 times a night! People with this disorder should seek treatment because it can lead to fragmented sleep, and in severe cases, death. Treatment involves wearing a CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) machine during the night, which maintains a steady airflow to open the respiratory passages.

While more commonly seen in children, at least 2% of adults report to suffer from a very embarrassing disorder of nocturnal enuresisbedwetting. As this involuntary voiding of urine during the night can be humiliating and flooding, most people turn to behavioral therapy as a remedy.

Are any of these sleep disturbances familiar to you? If so, what have you done to help “cure” them? Let us know if you’re still having issues with any of the topics we’ve discussed so far!

More information on sleep apnea.

More information on sleep apnea.


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