Late Night Chats?



As someone who lives with a roommate who sleep takes, has a brother at home who screams expletives some nights heard from down the hall, and has been known to babble in her own sleep I suppose it is only appropriate that I dive into the question: Why does one talk in their sleep?

According to WebMd   Sleep talking is also known as somniloquy "is the act of speaking during sleep." It's viewed as an out of the ordinary sleeping disorder and probably a lot more common than you think.  However a typical episode doesn't last any longer than thirty seconds and majority of the time it is mumbles and senseless phrases that come spewing out of the sleeper's mouth.  On one occasion my roommate who took Chinese for several years in the past began speaking Mandarin in the middle of the night, startling myself and our other roommate. It was hysterical, but crazy! The statistics say that around 10% of children sleep talk and converse while about 5% of adults do the same.  It is also shown that the disorder is gender neutral, but may run in families.

Onto the real reason why this blog post is being written: Why do we do it? Scientists claim sleep talking can occur in any stage of sleeping, not necessarily just your deepest sleep or when we dream and have nightmares.  Sleep talking is rather harmless, but if severe enough can point to certain sleep behavior disorders and even night terrors. Sleep talkers often overlap with sleep walkers or sleep eaters.  The article claims stress, medication, fever, mental health disorder, and substance abuse as some of the main causes for sleep talking. There is rarely ever a need for treatment, unless the person becomes a danger to themself or those around them. In that case, a doctor's appointment must be made. Since there is a lack of treatment, there really isn't a known way to reduce the talking either. It is advised to be aware of medication side effects, when you exercise and when you drink any beverages.

sleep talker.jpg

I don't know about you, but I am not quite satisfied with all these unknowns. I personally, would like a stronger answer as to why this occurs. I don't find sleep talking bothersome, but it would be nice to know why my body does some of the things it does. I feel that on nights where I get less sleep I hear about my sleep talking session, or nights when I eat a late dinner similar occurrences ensue. I suppose until a true study is done the world will never know. There is always the possibility of chance. But for right now I am intrigued to find out what the causation would be. If anyone has any leads, please let me know!


First off, I'd definitely like to give you props for being able to live with someone who sleep talks. If it was me, I'd probably get alarmed every night and panic that something was wrong with my roommate! Just like you, I still wonder the official reason on why sleep talking occurs, but I also wonder how consistent sleep talking is. Do these people sleep talk every night, or do certain things trigger the sleep talking to occur? Also,I think it would be cool to know if the location plays any role in whether sleep talkers speak or not. If your roommate was on vacation and out of her normal sleep setting, would she still continue to sleep talk? In case you need any advice on how to help your sleep talking roommate or brother, here's a list of five things you can do to help:

I've always wondered about this. It seems like a lot of sleepwalking is based on the dream that a person is having. Yet, when I talk in my dreams, I don't sleep talk out loud which leads me to wonder if there is some biological mechanism that blocks my speech as I sleep. This post also made me wonder whether there is a genetic component to sleep talking. I thought that people with parents who sleep talk might be more likely to do it themselves. After Googling it, I actually found an article about just this that suggests theres a clear genetic connection:

In the above post I meant to say "sleep talking" not sleepwalking"

I found your post to be very interesting. I sleep talk too and have always wondered why. Your post has helped me to better understand why this occurs, however, I agree with you on the fact that there doesn't seem to be a concrete reason as to why the body responds in this involuntary behavior. In own personal experience, I have found that I do most of my sleep talking in times that I am stressed or having a a nightmare. I wonder why that is a trigger for me. After reading your post, I did a little but of my own research on this and came across this site: . I think it would be a good read for you, since you are so interested in this topic. For me, it fostered a deeper understanding on this topic.

Sleep talking is something. especially when you are woken up by someone in the room babbling on. I believe sleep talking can come from a lot of different things, stress, childhood memories, foods, etc. Those that do it sometimes don't realize it unless you tell them. I don't know if there is cure for sleep talking, but this article suggests that the sleep talker seeks help from an expert.

This post intrigued me to see if there was any relationship between sleep talking and sleep walking. this article talks mainly about sleep walking, and gives some great information about how to deal with it's implications. It states that sleepwalking varies from sitting up in bead to actually driving a car. Interestingly enough, sleep talking is a symptom of sleep walking. It also gives great information about how to deal with someone who is sleep walking. I don't recommend using this method

I've always seen how people talk in their sleep as being really interesting and have always had an interest in how we are able to form words while we sleep. After reading your article I was surprised to read that there are still so many things not known about how or why people sleep talk! From what I've seen of sleep talking and does seem to increase/be more prevalent during times of stress. After reading your article I looked into sleep talking and I found an article, that talked about some other causes and facts of sleep talking. For example, in the article it talked about how sleep talking may actually be hereditary and that males are much more likely to sleep talk than women are.

You can check out this article here ->

Thank you for commenting, Sarah! I love getting feedback. Yes, it's definitely been a struggle living with someone that sleep talks! I've kind of gotten over it now, though. I read that article and it seems to give same instructions that the one researched in my article gave. I wonder why there isn't much research on sleep talking? I suppose it's because it's not a grave danger to anyone majority of the time. I found this random video of a guy recording his own sleep talking: It's pretty funny to see how so many people suffer from this and have different "conversations."

This blog is so great! I have a roommate who has sleep talked a couple times too! It was so weird and I had no idea how to react. It's very interesting that someone who is sick or stressed would begin to talk in their sleep. What's even more interesting is that people usually never remember sleep talking. Also sleep walking, and tossing and turning while asleep is also caused by the same stress created problems.

Yeah, this happened to me a while back to where my brother would ask me if I remembered talking during the middle of the night which I could not recall at all. That isn't to say I have seen it before myself. It really is an interesting phenomenon that can occur and I think it is because of the sub consciousness doing it's thing while we sleep or dreaming. But I guess it can also be considered a disorder that can be serious like you listed in your post. Either way, it is an interesting thing that can happen while we sleep.

Anushi, That's hysterical! I can't believe we both have a roommate that sleep talks! Thanks for the article! Good read!

I had to comment on this considering my roommate freshman year did this every night. I would always ask him if he did it at home as well & he claimed he did. I always wondered what made people do this. It's weird to think that these episodes last about 30 seconds at random times. I read something on The National Sleep Foundation, and it said there are a number of things that can contribute to this habit. Some of these were stress depression & sleep deprivation, to name a few.

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