usually before I can fall into a deep sleep i'll fall into a light sleep and then all of a sudden for NO reason out of the blue my body will jerk and it'll wake me up, its hard to explain, my boyfriend jokes around about it bc when we cuddle I'll spasm/twitch as I'm drifting off(just once or twice), but its really annoying sometimes when I'm trying to get to sleep and I'm all of a sudden awakened bc my body spasms...and its only right when I'm drifting off..sometimes i'll have a weird dream about falling or something and thats accompanied by a body spasm/twitch and i'll wake up terrified...its just weird...this only started recently(going about a year now probably), i'm not sure why...
I have exaclty the same thing. It happens 2 or 3 minutes before I fall asleep. Now it has become part of my sleeping routine: When I have the spasms, I now I`m about to fall asleep. It does not wake me up though (only very rarely). I have been experiencing numbenss in my left index finger for about 2 months now, and I have done an MRI of my neck to look for a pinched nerve. It was found that I have multiple mild bulgind discs. I wonder if this has something to do with the spasms. Have you experienced any numbness in fingers ?
This falling sensation, together with a body movement known as a "sleep start," is what doctors and scientists call a hypnic or myoclonic (say: my-eh-kla-nik) jerk, and it usually happens right before going into deeper stages of sleep.
Here's why doctors think the falling feeling and myoclonic jerks happen. When you fall asleep, normally your body temperature goes down and your heart starts to beat just a little slower. This is because your brain signals your body to relax to prepare for sleep. When your muscles are relaxed, you go into the very first stages of sleep, but you're not sleeping too deeply yet.
This brain activity may cause your larger muscles to contract a little bit. In response, another part of your brain will make up a very quick mini-dream to go along with what is happening. You might think this would take a while, but your brain works so lightning fast that it makes up the story almost at the same instant that your muscles jerk.
During this light sleep, you can be easily awakened - like if the phone rings or if your dog licks your face. A lot of people who do wake up during this light sleep believe they haven't really fallen asleep yet. That's why you may think that your body jerked right before you were about to fall asleep, but really, you were lightly asleep the whole time - just not deeply asleep.
Myoclonic jerks are a normal part of sleep. Most people (80%) have them at one time or another. But many people do not realize their muscles are jerking at times during light sleep and it doesn't wake them up.
Try watching someone who is in the early stages of sleep. If he's twitching a little bit, it means he's experiencing a myoclonic jerk but isn't being startled awake.
Interesting, but how do you explain these 'electrical' jerks when they occur regularly after a meal, and as I'm beginning to relax for the evening? I can feel it coming on. I've taken medications as Rx. Sometimes, it doesn't start until an hour after I've taken the meds. I have been up all night due to these spasms/jerks, and the pain with it, sometimes for days on end. I've tapered on coffee and chocolates; don't drink. Have sleep apnea and relatively low oxygen level. I also have scoliosis.
I wish there were a questionnaire and database available for better analysis to cause.
Threw my TV remote-control across the bedroom while jerking.
Thank you for all the great Info. But I do have to add that there must be more to it....as my spasms get so bad sometimes that if I'm holding onto the TV remote control and I have a spasm that I actually literly throw the remote control accross the room. My entire body has already lifted completley off the bed. It never fails....as I just begin to drift off it happens. Its even happened to me while in class at college, started to drift off and I jerk so hard my legs would jump and hit the table from underneath...at which time I was so embarrested that I pretened to be bitten by a bug. And unfortunatly some of us cannot afford to go to the doctor. God bless you all!
In reply to what was said by Benny, I'd like to add that my lady-friend has experienced some pretty severe ones, and all-too-frequently usually when she's attempting to drift off to sleep. They result in some quite serious headaches too, and prevent her from a sound rest. From reviewing the web info on this matter, I'm fairly confident in saying that this condition may be a symptom of something potentially quite serious, and may require a physicians diagnosis, as the possibility of any of MS, Parkinson's, Alzheimer's, or particular types of Epilepsy may be a possibility. My friend has seen neurologists in the past, but hasn't received any conclusive diagnosis, yet I'm concerned for her, and do yet understand her reluctance to be further poked and prodded. She has managed through the use of certain prescribed barbiturates, and Tylenol 1's, but I know this isn't the answer. I do encourage her to be tested more though, but when the medical community here repeatedly seems to have substantial difficulty in coming to any one particular conclusion, thereby pointing up the best state-of-the-art treatments, I'm quite sympathetic. This condition really does, as you may imagine, affect this lady's quality of life, and it would be so nice to have her on appropriate treatment finally. All feedback appreciated, and considered. Thank-You.
I have been doing these jerks/spasms for many years. They always happend when I am first falling asleep, or close my eyes to relax, ex: waiting for the doctor, watching tv. It bothers my husband to a certain extent, but I tell him to please not be alarmed and wake me, as it cause me to have to start all over, the sleep process. Sometimes they are smal, sometimes they are big. I know that if i dont do this, I am not tired enought to fall asleep. So once I start, i know I will be sleeping soon. I am 52 and sleeping is getting harder as I age. I have spoken to several doctors and they tell me, it is ok, not to worry. It has not hurt me in any way other than bother my husband. I have no other neurological problems. So i think it is more common than we can know. I know alot of comments say if they take sleeping pills or other aids, it doesnt happen, this is true with me as well. So I think if quality oflife is being comprimised, it should be checked into. I just hate waking people up, and scaring them, when nothing seems to be wrong. As I stated earlier this has been happening for at least 15 years now. No other complications. ( Darlene)
From a layman perspective, sometime people unfortunately have some behavior that links with some other aspect. I've noticed sometimes people worry about something the ineviatably cause it to happen. especially when it is a unconscious fear linked to a body state.
Initially the first time it happens that you are aware of you have say a dream that your falling followed by a jerk or spasm or in my case a full body contraction.
although i don't have a problem with my infrequent but freaky flinch, some people might bind the falling dream and the jerking body hitting the ground twitch and start a bad habit of keeping the going.
My advice, over come the fear of the dream. Hypnosis? Start a better ritual in the way you sleep. Maybe you could take a shower and relax. Melatonin.
It REALLY freaks me out. I has been happening lately more often, but I think it's from lack of sleep. And hey, it happens to everyone. Get over it. For some of the more severe cases do seek medical attention. MS, Parkinsons and AlZheimer's are all very serious and the sooner you know the BETTER you quality of life will be, but some things are just oddities of human biology. You know, come to think of it, cats do it too. And dogs.....
I also have severe body jerks when my body is relaxed. It can affect just one limb or a finger, or it can cause my whole entire body to jump off of the bed! At first, (they started almost 2 years ago) they would only happen when I was trying to fall asleep. Then about 10 months later, they would happen in a part of my body that was relaxed...example, when drivig a car, my left leg might ocassionally jerk. NOW, I can get them at any time. They don't happen very often when I am active, but they I have had ocassions when I was holding something and it would fly out of my hand because my hand or arm jerked. I am to the point where it is interfering with my everyday life. I have a Neurologist but haven't seen him in a while. He had put me on an anti-seizure drug called Keppra, and that worked pretty well, but I had to stop taking it because it was too expensive and I lost my insurance. I am also being tested for Lupus. Has anyone ever heard of this happening to someone that also has Lupus??? Also, does anyone know any other less-expensive drugs that may help reduce or eliminate this??? It has also interfered with my sleep tremendously!!
Hi to response to the guy who lost his insurance i dont have an answer for your insurance,but i have the same systoms as you. My body jerks randomly and it can be server at times and this scares me because i dont understand why this happens, it started about a year ago. Have dropped plenty of things or i can be laying or sitting in the bed playing a game or watching tv and it happens. My legs, head, arms, finger,but mostly my legs all the time. Does anyone have an answer for this problem.
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i've recently found out that as i fall asleep, my hands twitch. apparently this happens every time i fall asleep. the only reason i know this is because i was told...this twitching has never woken me up. i do get those sort of jerks like when you have a dream that you are falling but i think those are pretty common. however consistent hand twitching seems to be unique and i've been unable to find any info on it on the web. does anyone know what may cause this? i'm assuming it's not harmful as i've probably been doing this for my entire life, but i'm curious.
I have the same problem. Except when I wake up in the morning my hands feel like they've been twitching all night. I also wake up every three hours during the night. Have you heard anything since you've posted this?
it's a behaviour we've had for thousands of years. when we were apes and we lived in trees, the spasms woke us up so we wouldn't fall out of the tree and get eaten by predators. that's why the spasms are usually accompanied by a dream which includes falling of some sort.
I''ve had PLMD (periodic limb movements) for 10 years. I take iron 2-4 times a day and it helps greatly. It is because of low ferriton (storage of iron in the central nervous system). Have your ferriton count checked it should be over 50 and around 100 in order to get rid of the muscle jerks.
I suffer from lumbar spinal stenosis and have nerve damage. I find that when I am laying down just trying to relax, various muscle groups will contract and jerk randomly. This is with my eyes wide open while watching tv or reading. I also have numbness and tingling in my hands and feet.
I like rosief's explanation, tho, because I remember having it a lot when I was a kid, the feeling like I was falling, then the jerk.
Recently I have been having trouble sleeping because of this jerking when I fall into a deep sleep. It wakes me up all the time. I feel like every time I fall into a deep sleep the jerking happens. I haven't really told my physician yet but I am very worried about it. Is there really anything to help with the jerking when falling asleep. I'm glad that I got to read all your postings. I felt I was the only one having this problem.
I have these frequent whole-body muscle spasms also, but they happen when I'm just laying down, not even thinking about sleeping. I also am woken up frequently due to them, and they even happen before I enter a light sleep. Any help for someone who has these spasms while not even going to sleep?
Well, what can I say, i have all the symptoms above, i too have woken up with a bitten tongue, huge body jerks, thinking I'm having a heart attack etc. I went to sleep therapy clinic which was not cheap and also proved in- conclusive so save your money. My symptoms were triggered by my first and only panic attack 6 years ago, I've not been the same since. I might try the iron supplement as mentioned above-anything is better than knowing your going to spend the rest of your life with sleep deprivation. I wish you all well and hope you find a solution-we are not alone. Steve
My whole body will twitch when I'm in bed and my eyes are open, also recently I have become an insomniac and now I've been twitching involuntarily at random places in my body even with my anxiety drugs, so I don't know what's going on I guess I'll have to see a neurologist also Im 27 now and the twitching started when I was about 19! Any info would be great!
Anyone going to take an iron supplement, be careful how much you take!! Too much iron is toxic. I do know that for a woman it is OK to take 18mg or less daily. That dose is included in some multivitamins.
I also have twitching only when relaxed, or it wakes me up out of sleep. And when I was younger experienced finger tingling/twitching.
I actually get violent full body twitches and actually has happened that I wake up hitting things til I regain full awareness that I'm o.k. lately not hitting things cuz I'm getting used to it but when I awake I feel very disoriented not as in dizzy per say but u know the sensation of having water in your ears? something like in my brain starting from the middle of my head that goes down to the top of my neck like I'm in a day dream. fuzzy like. the slightest noise can scare me awake like the heater cracking sound. I am a lot more sensitive to noise. Usually when I wake up my heart starts to pound instantaneously and I'll have difficulty breathing but it doesn't last very long in those circumstances. like 5 minutes and it's over but the disorientation stays a while. I have had Panic attacks for 10 years now. I have never had an MRI because my Doctor refuses. It all started with the Jolts then eventually about a year later I had my first real panic attack. since then I have them under control but that fuzzy, disorienting stressful, fatigue feeling I can't seem to always get rid of. maybe lack of sleep? I tested negative for sleep apnea as well. hormone check was good, blood tests for everything regularly etc.. I always thought maybe it had something to do with my posture for the panic attack part. it's usually only when I'm sitting for long periods of time like playing guitar, driving, on the computer, sitting or laying down in bed. but the twitching I can seem to slow down when I take my Effexor regularly. I always seem to ask myself questions of what it could be but I've been sure it was my brain the whole time. could it be? maybe neck and spine problems... blood pressure..obstruction of some sort? it's definitely all in my head lol but what's causing it I'd really like to know. I can't go dancing with my friends cuz the bass makes me freak, go to metal shows, or even get in an elevator with out my brain feeling like it's just fallen into my stomach. any takers on this one?
Hey man I`m sorry you went through all this time and still didn`t get a reply on your message. I don`t have the answer to your question but I would like to know if over the past two years you found it because I`ve been facing the same issues since young age. I don`t have any problems with music but I`ve woken up punching things too a few times, almost broke my hand once against the wall next to my bed. People suspect I have ADHD but I don`t know if that would cause me to wake up the way I do. Sorry I couldn`t help much but if you have any information on your sleeping problems I would appreciate the input, and good luck if you`re still struggling with it