Parasomnia, which means “around sleep,” includes sleepwalking, night terrors, bedwetting, and narcolepsy. All can create family difficulties, and some may be harmful to the child.

They are a group of acute, undesirable, episodic physical phenomena that usually occur during sleep, or are exaggerated by sleep. Even though parasomnias occur during different stages of sleep and at different times during the night they are characterized by partial arousals before, during, or after the event. Most parasomnias are precipitated or perpetuated by stress, and an interaction between biological and psychological factors is presumed in many cases.