It was once dubbed the "Minnesota disease" because the only documented cases of REM sleep behavior disorder (RBD) initially came from here. RBD is a condition in which a person acts out his or her dreams (often violently). Sleep scientist Dr. Michael Howell recalled some memorable cases of dream enactment due to RBD:
The Football Star: One of the first cases of RBD was documented in 1982 by Howell's mentor, Dr. Carlos Schenck. A 110-pound grocer was dreaming that he was a football player and regularly jumping out of bed. Schenck and his colleagues determined he was acting out his dreams because his body couldn't stay paralyzed during sleep. "This was a complete breakthrough," Howell said.
The Boat Jumper: A woman was dreaming that she was jumping off a boat. She leapt from her bed and went right into her dresser, leaving her with a black eye and bruises.
The Cannonball: "We had one individual dreaming he was doing a cannon ball into the swimming pool," Howell said. The man did a cannonball onto his bedroom floor and broke his pelvis. "Very terrifying," Howell said.
The Deer Hunter: Another one of Schenck's landmark cases involved a man who was dreaming that a deer he had shot was not dead yet. The man attempted to break its neck in the dream, only to wake up to his wife's screaming because he had his arms wrapped around her head. As a result, he would tie his arms to his bedpost at night to keep his wife safe, Howell said.