Saturday, May 2, 2009

Violent Sleep: Acting Out Dreams & Nightmares

CBS 2 News in Los Angeles reports on REM sleep behavior disorder, or RBD. Note: Parents should be aware that the video on the CBS Web site may not be appropriate for children.

People who have RBD act out vivid
dreams and nightmares as they sleep. The dreams tend to be action-packed. The dreamer may punch, kick, jump or get out of bed and run. All of this occurs while he or she is still asleep.

Injuries are common. Cuts, bruises or broken bones may occur to the dreamer or to a bedpartner.

"It is violent, moving nightmares,”
Dr. Carlos Schenck told CBS. “It is what happens during sleep, and they end up hurting themselves or bed partners."

Schenck and colleague
Dr. Mark Mahowald first identified RBD, reporting on it in the journal Sleep in 1986. Sixteen years later they filed a follow-up report.

Schenck also is executive producer of the documentary
Sleep Runners. It tells the true stories of people who suffer from RBD and other parasomnias.

Contact an AASM-accredited sleep center if you or someone you know acts out dreams during sleep.


Anonymous said...

I suffer from RBD. It has been 9 years now and I'm on Klonipin to help control it. I'm on a very low dosage that I can take 1 or 2 times per day. I was fine on 1/day for a couple of years then my husband informed me it is not working and I increased to 2 doses per day. This is a terrible thing to live with. You're up all hours of the night running around the house doing things that you don't even realize. A few of my more recent episodes included grabbing the car keys (thank GOD the jingle of the keys woke me) and hanging out the 2nd floor window trying to see who was attempting to get in my home (which was all part of the dream). My episodes ALWAYS include me or someone in my family in harms way. I can feel for ANYONE that also suffers from this because it brings a new meaning to the words "sleep deprived"!!!

Mellissa said...

After reading this article I guess I suffer from RBD also. I'm 24 y.o and 36weeks pregnant, since becoming pregnant these dreams have become more vivid than ever. Last night my fiance woke me up gently, it took 10 mins to wake me, and I guess from what he says I was hitting him extremely hard in the chest, screaming, and crying "don't take my baby from us, please don't hurt him!". In the dream I was doing the exact same thing to someone who was kidnapping our son and saying he was going to torture and kill him. I always thought that these dreams were just because of my pregnancy hormones and that they would subside after the baby is born. But now that I can think about it, as fast as I can remember I've usually acted out in my sleep when my dreams are violent and vivid. If there is anything I can do to seek out help with/for RBD please email me the information. I'm petrified that the next dream is going to be even more violent than last nights and I'm scared that next time I won't just act out to the pillow or bed. I'm afraid that I might hurt my fiance, myself, or worst my child if the dream is bad enough. I mean as it is right now, my fiance shuts the bedroom door after I fall asleep because a few times I've woken up and popped opened every cabinet door and draw in our kitchen while I was asleep. So he closes our bedroom door because I guess I have a problem with turning knobs while I'm asleep. But please if there if any info out there that can help with RBD again please e mail me at :
Sleepless nights are coming to early for this pregnant woman.
- First time momma-2-be, mesha -
Please put in the subject of the email : rbd sleep info
Thank you

angie_04530 said...

Last night for the first time in my life i was having a nightmare but what I didnt know I was really living it out! I was dreaming that while my grandson was in my care he somehow got out while I was sleeping.I woke up in a terror running around outside at 3 am screaming his name.. I even got into my car and backed up in the parking lot leaving my drivers side door open and keys in the ignition. The maintence man knocked on my door at 7:30 this morning asking me why my car was in the middle of the parking lot with keys in it and the door open? I told him I had no idea and I would move it!.. I seriously thought I was going to die! i even woke my son up screaming that I lost the baby! He was getting dressed when I guess I woke up.! I called my daughter 3-4 times making sure she had him because I kept telling her i lost him. It wasnt till the next morning people was telling me what I did the night before. Can u help me Please.

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