Hypnic Jerk | Assumptions Of Hypnic Jerk

Hypnic Jerk

Hypnic jerk is an involuntary muscle twitch which occurs during the transition from wakefulness to sleep.

People who experience it describe hypnic jerk as a falling sensation or an electric shock and can cause movement of the body in bed.

People who have trouble falling asleep or not comfortable in bed appear to experience jerks more often through the night. Hypnic jerk can also cause due to sleep anxiety, depression and fatigue.

Hypnic Jerks assumptions:

  1. When your body enters into sleep, it undergoes changes in breathing, temperature and muscle relaxation. Muscle relaxing may cause hypnic jerk. Your brain interprets all the signs of relaxation as a sign that you are falling and signs your limbs to wake up. Therefore jerking occurs. This is likely to happen for some people because they experience a sensation or visions of falling as they drift into sleep.
  2. Hypnic jerk can also occur during the rapid eye movement of sleep. Dreams occur during REM phase and all your voluntary muscular activity stops with a complete drop in muscle tone. During REM sleep, some people experience slight eye or ear twitching and this is also reason when the hypnic jerk occurs.

In many people, hypnic jerk occurs once or twice a night. However, when a person has difficulty in falling asleep or trying to fall asleep, it may happen more frequently. In severe cases, muscle twitching can occur every thirty seconds or more. This condition is called periodic limb movement disorder.

Body reacts to falling asleep much in the same way that a body may twitch when dying. Hypnic jerk is a reflex used to keep the body functioning. Your brain registers falling asleep as a situation in which body needs to be stimulated.

Hypnic jerks can also occur when you wake up. This is rare but affects auditory and muscular nerves. In auditory sleep start, waking from sleep is accompanied with a very loud shatter or cracking which seems to come from head.

Many people experience hypnic jerks, but they cannot recognize them since the jerks are not strong enough to wake them up. Ten percent of population is affected by hypnic jerks at night.

Eighty percent are affected occasionally and ten percent rarely affected. When the person falling asleep next to you suddenly twitches without any reason, you can say that as a hypnic jerk.

In periodic limb movement disorder, you don’t have light jerks but a series of jerks that can go for hours. Your bed partner identifies the symptoms.

If you have series of jerks which is a problem for you and your partner, you should consult your health care provider to identify the cause and find out to manage the condition.

If you are experiencing normal hypnic jerk, there is no need to worry about it. Hypnic jerk does not cause damage to the body and poses no danger to your physical wellbeing.

All Article Categories