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Talking In Your Sleep: Causes, Dangers, and All Treatments

Published: August 10, 2021    

Updated: September 17, 2021

August 10, 2021    

Talking In Your Sleep: Causes, Dangers, and All Treatments

Talking in your sleep happens to many of us at one time or another. However, when it happens regularly, it is usually diagnosed as a sleep disorder called somniloquy.

Maybe your partner or roommate has noticed you chatting in your sleep frequently, and you are curious as to why this might be happening.

In this article, we are going to answer some of the questions that you might have about talking in your sleep. We will dive into:

So, let’s get straight to it. 

What Is Sleep Talking?

When someone talks in their sleep, it may range from full sentences to complete gibberish. You might even take on a different voice or speak in a different language.

All in all, it is usually quite harmless, except perhaps for the sleep deprivation that your partner or significant other might experience due to your frequent chatter.

Technically, sleep talking is a parasomnia. Parasomnias are any abnormal behaviors that occur as you sleep or move between sleep stages, including sleep talking, head banging, sleepwalking, and more. 

What Are the Consequences of Sleep Talking on Our Health?

Usually, sleep talking is harmless, not having any major impact on a person’s sleep. Additionally, it often doesn’t occur frequently enough to cause any major sleep deprivation.

At the same time, there are some scenarios where talking in your sleep can pose some problems, such as:

  • Disrupting your partner’s sleep, leaving them sleep-deprived during the day.
  • Revealing embarrassing information that leads to interpersonal conflict.
  • When it occurs alongside other parasomnias, such as sleepwalking. If this happens, it may indicate that you are experiencing a sleep disorder. In this case, it is really important to get checked out by your doctor.

Why Do People Talk in Their Sleep?

So, what does it mean when you talk in your sleep? What causes sleep talking?

The answer to the question, “Why do people talk in their sleep?” is much more vague than many would like. The truth is that experts are not really sure why this happens in most cases.

Some evidence connects sleep talking to dream reenactments, which occur during rapid eye movement (REM) sleep. However, sleep talking may happen during REM and non-REM sleep stages. 

Other research suggests that a genetic component may be involved. This means that if your mother or father is a sleep talker, you are more likely to be one as well. 

Overall, sleep experts seem to agree that sleep talking is more frequent in those with mental health conditions or with those experiencing post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).  

If snoring is associated with sleep talking, it may further be related to obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), which requires a specialist to observe your sleep in a lab for proper diagnosis.

What Are the Symptoms of Sleep Talking?

The main symptom of sleep talking is audible expression as you sleep. Research indicates that half the time, this sleep talking is gibberish, mumbling, and incomprehensible. Sleep talking that is comprehensible resembles conversational speech.

Typically, sleep talking only lasts for a short period of time as a person sleeps, such as a few minutes or on and off. 

Sleep Talking and Sleeping Stages

Sleep talking and sleeping stages

Interestingly, talking in your sleep is most comprehensible during the REM stage of sleep. Gibberish and other mumblings typically occur during deep, non-REM sleep.

Sleep talking can also occur, as previously mentioned, during sleepwalking or even during a nocturnal-related eating disorder.

Why Do People Scream in Their Sleep?

Screaming in sleep is less common. If you are yelling in sleep, this is usually a sign of a REM sleep behavior disorder (RBD) or sleep terrors. 

In particular, during sleep terrors, yelling in sleep might coincide with thrashing or kicking. In these situations, it can be difficult to wake someone up. These situations are also most common in children.

Screaming in sleep is also found during the dreams and may involve shouting, grunting, and violent movements.

How To Stop Sleep Talking

By now, you might be wondering how to stop sleep talking. The following sleep talking treatments may help:

  • Lifestyle changes—this may mean avoiding alcohol, caffeine, and heavy meals before bed. It may further involve setting up a regular sleep schedule, exposing yourself to sunlight during the day, and following good sleep hygiene, such as ensuring your bedroom is dark, cool, and quiet.
  • Sleep hypnosis—if you are having difficulty sleeping and experiencing random sleep talking events, sleep hypnosis might help both you and your partner obtain a relaxing night’s rest.
  • Consider therapy—for mental disorders, stress, anxiety, and more, a professional can help you find proactive and healthy ways to cope that do not interrupt your sleep.
  • Stress management—find ways to minimize your stress, such as through meditation, mindfulness, and relaxation techniques.

Mastering Your Sleep Is a Sure-Fire Way to a Better and Happier Life

Mastering your sleep

Talking in your sleep is typically nothing to worry about, unless it happens often and along with other disturbances. Assess your sleep patterns and determine if talking in your sleep is interrupting your beauty rest. From there, you can find ways to address the problem and tackle it once and for all.
If you want to start doing that right here and right now, purchase the Perfect Deep Unbroken Sleep audio course from globally acclaimed hypnotherapist Marisa Peer. Help yourself find optimal rest so you can lead an optimal life.

Author: Marisa Peer
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Marisa shares her 30 years of experience as a multi-award-winning therapist to celebrities, top athletes, and even royalty. She is the founder and creator of RTT®, the cutting-edge method and hybrid solution-based treatment that can deliver extraordinary transformations.
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