We all look forward to getting those 8 hours of sleep every night. But these good hours of rest can be difficult for many affected by disorders like insomnia. Some even suffer from vague problems like sleepwalking, sleep apnea and sleep talking. But we bet you would have never heard of sexsomnia! It is a real disorder and we are not making this up.

A lot of things can come between you and good sleep and this includes sex. While engaging in sexual activity promises some good sleep, according to several studies, sex itself can be very troubling for some. Sexsomnia is a real disorder where people engage in sexual activities while they are sleeping. Just like sleepwalking or parasomnia, sexsomnia results from a condition during the REM cycle, when the brain is caught in between stages, i.e., acting out awake while you are still sleeping. This affects around 7.6% population and is more prevalent in men than women.

People who are diagnosed with sexsomnia usually engage in sexual activities, masturbate, perform oral sex, fondle or have sex with their partner but the only thing is, they do not recall or recollect any of this when they wake up. It usually occurs in the first few hours of deep sleep. The episodes can occur multiples times in the night too. The person suffering from it may open their eyes and act awake but what they are really doing is keeping up through an amnesic episode. Symptoms include pelvic thrusting, foreplay, indulging in behaviour which mimics sexual interest and keeping vacant eye contact throughout.

All this feels like a sex dream to those suffering from the condition but sexsomnia is very different from sex dreams. While sex dreams are a common occurring, those who suffer from sexsomnia don’t even realise they have it and often are told about it by their partners or roommates. This can be borderline dangerous. Unlike sleepwalking, sexsomnia is largely unknown and misunderstood. The episodes are also likely to be more aggressive and rapid than normal sex and that is why it needs to be treated as soon as discovered.

What causes it? How is it treated?

Like many sleep disorders, the most common reason for sexsomnia is sleep deprivation and stress. Certain medications can also pose a possible risk for this. Patients are then usually prescribed therapy and even sleep medication at times to treat the condition.

Source: indiatimes.com