Sleep-Talking: Psychology and Psychophysiology

By Arthur M. Arkin | Go to book overview
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19
Pathological and Experimental States Related to Somniloquy

A typical feature of night terror and daytime hypersomnia episodes, sequellae of experimental sleep deprivation, and frequently of REM narcolepsy- cataplexy events is the occurrence of spontaneous vocalization with and without speech, which appears to reflect internal experience rather than external stimuli, and for which there are strong amnestic tendencies. It is therefore of interest to relate such phenomena to the typical somniloquy of more or less normal people under normal circumstances.

In exploring this issue, a useful organizing perspective is afforded by the concept of anomalous state of consciousness manifestation in the otherwise prevailing state of the moment. That is, during the four conditions under discussion, the prevailing state, whether it is wakefulness or Stage 4 sleep, is perturbed by the sudden appearance of behavioral, subjective, and electrographic components of some other state of consciousness; and depending on how small the time scale one uses, such manifestation may temporarily preempt the previously prevailing condition, or else blend or interact with it, concurrently producing a complex of multiple components. This concept of anomalous state of consciousness manifestation has been utilized by Dement and Rechtschaffen ( 1968), Guilleminault, Billard, Montplaisir, and Dement, ( 1975a), Guilleminault, Phillips, and Dement ( 1975b), Vogel( 1976), and others.


THE NIGHT-TERROR AND SLEEP-UTTERANCE

Broughton ( 1968), Fisher, Kahn, Edwards, and Davis ( 1974, 1975), and Gastaut and Broughton ( 1965) have carried out extensive laboratory studies on night-terror syndromes, the episodes of which have a special predilection

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