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Sleep Disorders/Raising arms to tickle stroke them in deep sleep

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Sean wrote at 2010-11-02 00:05:28
I don't have an answer to your question unfortunately, however I did come across your question while I was searching for the same answer. I am in exactly the same situation as you except that it doesn't really bother me at all. It's quite funny really. But, I think it's just a relaxing thing. I love it when people tickle me when I'm awake and maybe it's just an extension of that. Would love to know, though, if there is a deeper reason behind it...


Dana wrote at 2011-01-02 06:19:56
I too find myself with the same situation. I wake up and my arms are reaching up to the ceiling or I am lightly rubbing my arms or I tickle them. Just curious also as to why I do this..


Raymond wrote at 2011-09-11 18:42:20
I have the same problem too. I didn't realize it until I got married and my wife told me about it. I do not drink. I go to sleep and get up at the same time every day.

I am insulted by the answer given to Jessica, "First of all you need to stop drinking, alcohol on some can make you unable to sleep . Thats probably is what is caTry these tips religiously for about 6-8 weeks but many have seen results

in as little as 2 weeks.lYou must go to bed and awaken the same time each day regardless

of how little or how  much sleep you got the night before."



A real expert would know how to speak and use the English language properly and not reply with such an error filled blanket statement.


Sandy wrote at 2012-09-27 01:23:05
I do this too and have done it all my life. I am 45 years old.  


awilde wrote at 2013-08-29 07:36:07
I do this too. You mentioned deep REM sleep. I was just having vivid dreams and caught myself doing this, moments ago. I also put my arms up in the air for several minutes, or will tickle/comfort stroke my arms and chest, etc. often unaware I am doing this. I was sleeping great, and although it's 1:30am right now, I already feel I've slept much longer. I haven't been able to find much information either, but that long answer doesn't seem to know much either, despite all the words. I wouldn't worry about it, except you probably smack your boyfriend in your sleep from time to time - my husband is just used to all the things I do in my sleep - conversations in my sleep, movements relating to actions in my dreams, etc.  


Tedems wrote at 2013-11-01 19:54:38
I dont drink booze or beer, I wake up at the same time and have for years, I do the same thing this girl does... but three days ago either myself or something slammed my arm down on my night stand table so hard its ached badly for three days -- and it was during a deep sleep --- Your "Answer" is invalid to me... But I feel better knowing it isnt just me who is sleep stroking my own arm


courtney wrote at 2013-12-21 09:08:47
I would do this all the time as a child too, it would wake me up and freak me out. I sometimes do it as an adult. I would like to know why.


nicole wrote at 2014-06-18 13:34:22
i often wake up and im tickling my own arm and down my side of my body it always seems to be my right side i wish i knew why ? and my arm is also raised


paddy wrote at 2014-07-13 10:21:59
I do this very often and when i wake i continue to do it until i fall back to sleep very relaxing and a feelgood fealing:  )  


pambam2 wrote at 2014-11-10 13:41:19
this is hilarious - I thought it was just me who tickled my own raised arm in my sleep - glad I'm not the only freaky one :) And I agree, it's quite relaxing and doesn't cause me any distress at all.  


dana wrote at 2014-11-25 08:35:25
I do this too! Always freaks me out when I wake up with my arm stretched out.  


bodhi wrote at 2014-12-02 05:29:21
LOL we are freaks , but we're not alone...arm raiser and tickler here.curious if anyone here takes opiate medications or opiate agonists? I've heard this to be a potential common, strange and humorous denominator.


Werydgh wrote at 2014-12-04 04:44:28
I have been doing the same thing for the last few weeks. Is anyone else on Ambien or other sleeping pills?  


Werydgh wrote at 2014-12-04 04:44:35
I have been doing the same thing for the last few weeks. Is anyone else on Ambien or other sleeping pills?  


Happysleeper wrote at 2015-01-18 16:05:09
I do this too. I've done it since I was a kid and I do it now as an adult at 30 years old. I don't take medication or drink often. I didn't realize o did this consistently or that it was odd until my husband pointed it out, but it does feel nice. It's a very comforting feeling.


Melissa Jensen wrote at 2015-01-22 07:57:11
I do this quite often. I wake up while doing it and it's an amazing sensation. If I become too aware of what I'm doing then the soothing feeling goes away. My fiance gets really creeped out when he wakes up to me having my arms in the air while I'm sleeping and he pushes them down.


Lee77 wrote at 2015-03-20 00:55:08
I'm having theropy and I also do the same, and I have done my whole adult life! It can be linked to feelings of loneliness as a child or abuse. it's comforting or there is damage to your cerribelum in your brain.


Killakate wrote at 2015-03-22 00:36:25
I am relieved I'm not the only one!! Haha. I have been told I sleep with 1 arm in the air, sometimes both. Sometimes I play with my hair -- always go to bed with my hair up and always wake up with it down. Apparently I run my hands through it a lot

I've been an opiate addict for 6 years, this is when this started happening. I started with 30s or Roxie's, heroin for awhile, now I'm on methadone. This continued throughout each phase. Actually notice it a lot more now, probably bc I'm actually sleeping and not just nodding out.

Very strange! Doesn't bother me, just was curious as to the cause and that's the only thing I have really found out through my research on it. I'll ask my doctor when I go next month, just out of curiosity. I was happy to see I'm not alone, it creeps some people out haha :)


russ wrote at 2015-04-08 05:52:03
My name is Russ and I'm a nocturnal tickler...I find I prefer the palms of my hand but arms get their fair share...I too an glad to find I'm not the only one...I wish we could get a more concrete answer as to why though


Voncanon wrote at 2015-11-05 19:11:08
My mom noticed that my dad does this in his sleep. Soon after finding that out, I woke up and realized I also do the same thing. I also noticed that my brother did the same. We do not drink everyday, and do not take opiates. My hypothesis is that it is a subconscious action that can be traced back to our infancy when we would stretch our arms out to Someone asking to be held or comforted. This explains why lots of us feel comforted by this and similar actions, and do it until we fall back asleep. Not sure why not everyone does this but if I had to guess its a psychological thing relating to the need to be comforted or something of that nature  


jakes84k wrote at 2015-12-04 22:37:04
I also tickle my arm in my sleep. I notice it when I wake up sometimes, it feels really good and doesn't bother me at all. I don't drink very much and I'm not taking any opiates, I have been on and off Cannabis for 10 years though.

I always thought it had something to do with my other problem: I have a comfort blanket which is my old PE t shirt when I was about 6 years old, I'm now 31. I don't know why I still have a comfort blanket, but it has the same feelgood factor as ticking my arm in my sleep. My wife doesn't mind it, which makes me use it even more. My dad died when I was 9 and I had pretty horrific teenage years - consistent daily bullying until I left school at 16, I'm sure it must all be linked. I like to think I lead a pretty good life now, but these small problems (Cannabis, comfort blanket, arm tickling) I think are scars from my childhood.


Momof7 wrote at 2016-01-06 09:22:12
I laughed out loud at the first response.  For someone to make blanket statements clearly demonstrates the respondent is not an expert by any means.  Making such absurd statements along with going to bed at same time, some of us work and do not have that luxury.  I have done this as long as I can remember and I can assure I didnt drink when I was a child and I do not drink while at work.   

This ticking of the arms while sleeping happens all the time.  My husband thinks its hilarious and thinks its cute.  Yes, I talk a lot in my sleep and have active and vivid dreams.  Some days I sleep well some days I dont and still I do it. If there is an explanation that would be great, in the mean time I am a source of amusement for my wonderful husband nice to know I am not alone  


Gingergirl wrote at 2016-01-22 08:27:24
I believe it is adorable and simply relaxation.  My toddler would say "tickle arm?" And wait arm straight up like he was waiting! There are so few simple answers these days and sleep disruption if something can relax our minds and its free spread the wealth! People love massage therapy so possibly same basis...😊


Michelle wrote at 2016-06-09 23:39:37
This is crazy, I checked this out as in the last year I have woken up around four times tickling my arm. Like others my arms are raised. I all so from being a child have found being tickled relaxing. I am relived to know I'm not the only one. Thought I was going mad,not told anyone of this strange act,till now.


John wrote at 2016-07-10 23:34:23
Wow! same here... Almost every night for the past couple of months I wake up busy stroking my arms. I wonder if it's because we're alone - on an emotional level. Just moved to a new town and have no friends yet. the only interaction I get is with people at the office.


Randa wrote at 2016-08-19 04:29:01
I know this thread is older but I had to add my response! I am an arm tickler also! It is only when I am in deep sleep. I wake up quite a bit through the night, and I will find myself lightly rubbing my fingertips up and down each arm until I go back to sleep! It happens almost every night. Most of the time my arms are straight in the air when I do this. Sometimes I wake up when I am doing it, but mostly I never know (husband tells me). It feels so comforting and will always put me right back to sleep. I have done this as long as I remember and I am 40. Glad to hear I am not alone!!



I did actually have a rough childhood...which someone mentioned might be the cause...so that part makes sense for my situation. But sounds like there are a lot of us!


Tyler Wetzel-Haynes wrote at 2016-09-14 05:02:49
Wow this is so weird! Same experience. Wake up with my arm in the air tickling it.. feels good but it's just odd haha. Glad to know I'm not alone


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