Sleep Walking / Somnambulism
Patient education and safety measures
Educating the patient, the bed partner or care taker is important for the management of Sleepwalking.
Patient education is important as it helps to prevent injuries to the self and to the bed partner. When these disorders are present during childhood, the most important aspect is the support of the parents. Educating the patient to accept the condition is important.
Advising patients and caretakers about the risks of injury to self and others during Sleepwalking, and emphasizing the need to avoid such injuries, are crucial. Sleepwalking occurs during sleep so it makes the concerned person and the bed partner vulnerable to accidents.
A sleepwalker’s home should be redesigned to avoid unnecessary injuries. Adequate safety measures are needed to prevent these injuries.
Pediatric and Geriatric concerns include consequences of falls and other injuries to self or others and sleep deprivation.
Lock the windows and doors throughout your home, in case the sleepwalker decides to wander.
Install child safety locking mechanisms at all exit points in the house.
Ensure sleep walkers use ordinary beds instead of bunk beds
Floor must be free of obstacles
Sharp objects around the sleeping area are a risky proposition. Remove them to make it safe.
Vehicle keys should be safely stored away from reach of children
A safety gate at the beginning of the stair case or in the child’s room is a good protective measure.
If possible, relocate the bedroom to the ground floor.
Sudden cessation of medication, caffeine and alcohol can trigger the episodes, so ensure that there is a gradual withdrawal.