Viraj woke up in the middle of the night to find that his shorts and bedsheet were wet and sticky. Had he just wet his bed with urine? At his age? He felt surprised and a bit embarrassed until his elder brother told him that he had just experienced a nightfall or a wet dream and that it was a healthy and normal part of growing up. Let’s understand more about nightfall in this week’s Curiocity Central.
What is it?
Wet dreams or nightfall is perfectly normal and a part of growing up. In boys, wet dreams (also known as nocturnal emissions or ‘night fall’) is spontaneous ejaculation of a sticky white fluid called semen, that comes out of their penis in your sleep. Ejaculation means to release semen (the fluid that contains sperm – the male sex cells responsible for reproduction) from your penis. This can happen on its own, even sometimes without any erection in your penis.
When it happens, semen – the sticky fluid from your penis, will leave a wet patch in your bed or your underwear. For some boys, a wet dream can be the first time they ejaculate.
Why do they happen?
Wet dreams begin during puberty when The main changes that take place in our bodies are caused by hormones. The male testicles produce the hormones called testosterone, which leads to the production of sperms, which are present in the semen – the sticky white discharge that comes out of your penis during ejaculation during wet dreams.
When the levels of the hormone testosterone rise in your body during puberty, wet dreams happen. Wet dreams usually happen during nighttime while you are sleeping and can be caused by something that you feel is exotic. It can be caused by the friction from the sheets and your penis when you toss and turn in your sleep or maybe something else.
Sometimes you come to know about it and wake up after this dream, while other times you may just sleep through it. Both ways, there is nothing to be embarrassed about or feel guilty about. You did nothing wrong.
Do girls have it too?
Yes, some teen girls can have wet dreams but they are not as same as boys. Their vagina may feel wet or sensitive to touch but they cannot ejaculate like boys. However, the phenomenon is more common in boys than girls.
Is something wrong with me?
Though the occurrence of wet dreams can be confusing and embarrassing, there is nothing wrong with having wet dreams. They are a normal part of growing up. Even if you have a lot of wet dreams it doesn’t mean there’s anything wrong with you.
And they don’t have any bad effects on your health. Some people have wet dreams a few times a week. Others may only have a couple of wet dreams during their entire lifetime. Some of your friends have had wet dreams too. It’s normal and not a sign of any health issues. They also do not cause any problems related to your health.
As you grow old, the frequency of wet dreams starts to decrease. There is nothing really you can do to stop them. Many adults have them too, so do not be embarrassed about it.
How can I manage them?
If you are worried about having a wet dream, keep a towel under your bed while you sleep. If you are at your friend’s place for a sleepover or just sharing the bed with someone like on a trip, keep an extra set of underwear.
Persons in the photo are models. Shutterstock/Manuela Durson
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