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Jolting before falling asleep.

   Every night just before I fall asleep I suddenly have Jolts where I can actually get a foot off my bed and knock things off
  the table. My body just Jolts and wakes me up. I get this even during day time naps. The only time it doesn't happen is
  when I have a few beers before going to bed.
  : Sometimes it takes me 2 to 3 hours before I can finally get to sleep because the Jolts just keep comming. I have had this
  problem for about 7,8 years. It used to scare me at first, but now it seems like a normal every night thing. Even today I had
  one so bad that I was laying on my belly and it/Jolt flipped me onto my back.
  : Can you please tell me what this is and what to do about it so I don't have to drink beer before bed every night in order to
  sleep well that night.
  : Thanks!
  : Brad
Dear Brad:
Your problem is quite common.
It is called Hypnagogic jerk. It usually occurs during sleep onset. In some patients it is little bit more severe than others, and it can be alleviated by beer or alcohol. That does not mean that you have to take alcohol on a regular basis to suppress it.
These jerks are usually single ones, if they recur during the same night, other problems such as periodic leg movements should be ruled out.
If these symptoms are severe enough they may prevent good night sleep and lead to excessive day time sleepiness.
Depending on the problem, there are multiple medications that may be used.
If you have these symptoms, I would suggest that you consult with Neurologist/sleep specialist for evaluation and possible work up.
If you desire to be seen at the Cleveland Clinic Sleep Center, please call 1800 CCF CARE.
Good luck

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