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Child awake, but unable to properly respond
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Child awake, but unable to properly respond

My 5-year old son fell asleep on our bed watching TV.  I picked him up to take him down to bed.  When we were in the bedroom I set him down since he was now awake and asked him to take off his clothes and put on the PJs I laid out for him.  He started to pace around the room and kind of rock from one foot to the other.  He seemed unable to comply with my requests even after repeating it 5-6 times.  i asked him what's wrong many times and I even was asking him to "answer me" but could hardly get a response.  After a while he would answer in one word answers but seemed very confused and disoriented.  I again asked him to take off his clothes and he immediately started walking out of the room.  I asked him to come back and where he was going but no answer.  He came back but when asked where he was going he told me he forgot.  He eventually climbed in bed, but was crying and seemed confused and still restless like he needed to do something. What is going on?!?  This has happened once or twice before over the last 2 years.  Any advice?  Thank you!
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Avatar_f_tn
I wish I had an answer for that, but my 5 year old daughter does this all too often.  She will be looking right at me and most of the time she is rocking or doing the rocking on foot to foot and I think she is awake but when I go to talk to her I get no response and if I do get a response after numerous attempts, its usually crying and her saying something like Mommy I'm tired and she falls back to her bed and go es to sleep.  She doesn't always do this out of her bed, most of the time she awakes crying, r at least I think she is awake and I try talking to her, but I soon realize she is asleep.  During the times she comes strolling into my room, I always think she is awake, but when I talk to her sometimes she doesn't answer, she just stands there a minute and then turns and goes back to her room.  I think it is just sleep walking, but it is weird.  I wish I had advice but I just thought I'd share so you aren't alone.
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Avatar_m_tn
Hi, Like sleep terrors, sleepwalking occurs during deep sleep, usually early in the night where a child appears to be awake but is not. Sleepwalkers usually don’t remember their actions, may be difficult to awaken, and usually feel confused or disoriented upon being awakened. Sleepwalking can be dangerous, as the sleepwalker is unaware of environment and can injure self by falling or bumping into things commonly seen in children but can affect people of all ages. Sleepwalking seems to run in families and may also be provoked by sleep deprivation in children.
Practicing good sleep hygiene often helps to resolve sleepwalking. Children who sleepwalk tend to outgrow the disorder, if not may want to consider, relaxation therapy, and/or medications as suggested by a doctor. Take care.
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Avatar_f_tn
I don't want to alarm anyone unnecessarily, but this too happened to my son several years ago, probably started when he was 2 and 1/2 years old.  (he is now 18)....After several of these 'episodes' she sent him for an EEG and he was diagnosed with Epilepsy.  Early in his life, he had what they termed "focal epilepsy" or "absense seizures" which unfortunately have gotten worse with time.  He is on meds now and has been seizure free for almost 3 years!  :)
The only reason I bring this up to you is that the first doctor said the same thing about this "sleep walking" issue, and thankfully I got a second opinion....
Good luck to you, and I hope your child is doing well....
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Avatar_m_tn
Hi john_sifert, how is your son doing? I hope you might have had taken him for an evaluation by now, can you give some info as to when it actually started? How many times does he do this kind of walking in one night? You need to observe him for some more times to see any changes to normalcy or otherwise. Avoid putting him to sleep particularly on first or second floor and would be better if you can be with him. Usually as he grows, this sleep walks comes down. Give him a warm bath, make him listen soft music and put him to sleep little early. If he is scary to sleep alone, you can ask him to sleep with you, as he may feel safe and comforting. Consult your doctor if there is not change towards normalcy. Take care and post your thoughts.  
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