Rocking during sleep

Ian Oswald (as related in his book Sleep, Penguin) observed active rocking in some children and adults during sleep. These rocking movements were very powerful, occurring at a rate of one per second during REM sleep. They occur more frequently in the blind or to people institutionalised during childhood. As rocking is a movement used by primates and humans to comfort themselves during stress or unhappiness, it is possible that the rocking accompanies disturbing dreams. The dream probably evokes unhappy feelings or conditions from the past. As the person used rocking to cope with their past distress, it occurs as a habitual accompaniment of the distressing dream. We might rock because that is how it felt in the womb as our mother moved.

I have always rocked in my sleep

I am also 19 and have been rocking myself to sleep with music my whole life, my brother does it as well. although nobody knows i do this, i believe there is a reason why there are certain people who do this, (besides that its a way to deal with stress) when im rocking im usually constantly “day dreaming” in my head, all positive thoughts mainly. positive thoughts produce positive actions and decisions, which lead to following your intuitions and bettering yourself. i hope i wont be rocking my whole life, but have learned a way to embrace it.

Another person reports:

Every night about 2 hours after falling asleep, my 6 year old son gets into a crouching position and rocks backwards and fowards bending his neck back and forth (almost as if his about to do a somersault) He does this throughout the night with some intervals of restful sleep. This has been going on for years and I am not sure where to turn for help. Does anyone know why he is doing this and is it dangerous for him?

If you regularly remember and really explore your dreams it can reduce stress and bring about change. See Dream Processing; Movements During Sleep.

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