It is not uncommon for children to talk in their sleep, and it is usually nothing to worry about. This post will help you recognize when your child is talking in their sleep, know what to do about it, and determine if you should tell your child’s doctor.

Understanding Sleep Talking

Sleep talking is speaking, laughing, or moaning while still asleep. It can start around the time children learn to speak or later in childhood. Nearly 50% of children will sleep talk for at least a little while. A child is more likely to sleep talk if one or both of their parents did. It can happen on occasion or nightly. If it happens less than once a week, it is considered mild.

How to Tell Your Child is Sleep Talking

When you hear your child talking or making other vocal-like noises, your first assumption may be to assume your child is no longer asleep. 

Signs of sleep talking include:

  • There is no emotion in the words.
  • They are speaking clearly, but their words don’t make sense.
  • They are not speaking clearly.
  • They stop talking as they fall deeper into sleep.
  • Their eyes are open, but they don’t respond to your presence because they are still asleep.
  • They don’t remember it when they wake up.

What Causes Sleep Talking

Genetics is a common cause of sleep talking. Nightmares can also cause a child to talk or make noises in their sleep. Children may be more likely to talk in their sleep when they are overtired or stressed. If they have a fever or sleep apnea, they may sleep talk.

What to Do When Your Child Sleep Talks

  • Don’t wake them. There is no need, but they do need their sleep. It may also be difficult to wake them because they are probably fast asleep. 
  • Tell other people who will care for your child while they are sleeping, such as a babysitter, family member, or parents at a sleepover. This way they won’t be surprised by the sleep talking. 
  • If the sleep talking is keeping family members awake, you can give everyone else ear plugs or use white noise.
  • Ensure they are getting 11 – 14 hours of sleep in a day and have a regular sleep routine to prevent overtiredness.

When to Call Your Child’s Doctor

If your child’s sleep talking is increasing in frequency, the sleep talking includes limb movements, they are unusually sleepy during the day, or they seem upset while sleep talking, these could be signs of sleep disorders.

Call Petite Dreamers

If your child doesn’t have a healthy sleep routine, sleep training can help. Sleep consultants are trained in safe and effective techniques to help children and their families get the sleep they need. Contact us today to get started with a free discovery call.