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I Need too Much Sleep
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Beanie4455 posted:
I am 27 years old and have had a problem waking up in the morning, my entire life. It's impossible sometimes. I feel as though I would make any excuse in the world to lay there in bed a little longer. I feel like my body needs at least 12 hours of sleep to feel rested.

I've always been told and feel that I'm just lazy but it seems to be so much more than that. I've never been to a doctor nor a sleep study or anything. I have tried everything else: insanely loud alarm clocks, setting them across the room from me, several alarm clocks at once, setting them at least 2 hours before I have to get up so I can gradually wake up, have people call me, have my boyfriend sometimes physically get me out of bed.

When I was younger and my dad would have to get me out of bed (even high school, and if someone was there during college they would have had the same experience) I would crawl out of bed onto the floor away from the door and hide with a pillow and sleep. It was a battle every morning and I knew it drove my parents crazy but I just couldn't do anything. If I didn't crawl out of bed, I'd have the angle just right to where if I ball up where my pillow is, the angle would be just right and I'd be just out of view when he would walk past the door. My friend has even poured ice cold water on me when I stayed at her house to have a sleepover. I'll wake up, I'm not even that deep of a sleeper. But will convince myself while I'm halfway awake that it's ok to go back to sleep for another 15, 30 minutes. I've gotten into trouble with so many jobs because of it. I don't have any other disorders or anything wrong that I know of, including sleep apnea. I get sleepy during the day after I get up, but it's bearable, I usually just get some coffee or an energy drink.

It's like I'm a totally different person when I'm just waking up. I'm angry at the world that I have to get up. I'd like to have a job that doesn't require me to be there at 8 but it seems that in my field, those don't exist. I've failed classes because I couldn't get up early enough to be there.

My mom just thinks that I am a lazy person and that I should just be able to get out of bed like a normal person. This thought is embedded in my brain now, and so I'm completely embarrassed and just assumed it was my fault my entire life. Now I'm wondering if something is actually wrong with me medically.

I've even written myself profane, insulting notes by my alarm clock. I would feel guilty when I saw it but it wasn't enough. I feel like I get enough sleep at night. I don't wake up or get up during the night. I sometimes have trouble falling asleep. I hate it because my boyfriend is asleep within 5 minutes of hitting the pillow, and I will lie there for an hour or 2 before I drift off to sleep. I wonder if it is my inability to fall asleep quickly that causes me to need more sleep?

If no one wakes me up and I don't have an alarm clock set, I will sleep until my body feels rested, and even more than that a lot of the time. I will sleep until I have a pounding headache, my entire body aches, and I feel like crap, which in turn makes me want to go lay down some more! It seems to be a vicious cycle.

I've now developed these stomach pains and the doctors cannot figure out what it is. This has just been going on for the past few months. It usually occurs in the mornings as if I've been laying on my stomach the wrong way or something. I've had tests done for that, but they can't seem to figure out what it is. I have to call into work because it hurts so bad. Now, I've begun wondering if it's something my brain has made up so that I have an excuse to stay in bed longer. Either way, I feel as though my job is in jeopardy which makes me sad because I love it here. I moved out of state to work here.

I just need help. Medicine? Suggestions? Anything is welcome, just please let me know if I'm crazy or if something is really wrong with me. I want to keep my job!
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RJolicoeur responded:
Take a look at Atypical Depression & see it seems like a fit.
 
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Beanie4455 responded:
Thanks! I'll check it out and see, although I don't really feel depressed..
 
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kooldolphins responded:
This sounds like my life!!! I?m 30 and just recently think I may have found the key. Throughout my 20?s I have been a big No Carb dieter which works for me for weight loss and health. Recently I came across some information that has adjusted my thinking. I am not Gluten Free. It was the missing key to my life. I have been off gluten for 4 months and I wish I would have known sooner. Besides many health benefits I can live on 6 hours of sleep. 8 hours is still the best but I wake up naturally after 8 hours with no alarm and I am happy and alert. My mood is so much better and I barely have an alarm clock ring more than once before I hear it and turn it off. No need for the 5 I used to use. I?m not sure if this will work for you and I know it?s a lot of work to go gluten free but it can be worth it.
 
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JenaReneeP responded:
I am the same exact way but i do have alot of health probs. Im 29, when i was in high school i basically missed 50 or more days a year because i only wanted to sleep. Now as an adult I was in 2 car accidents in 10 yrs now I have severe chronic pain & take alot of meds so I sleep so much I cant even work consistently. I also failed a few classes in college for sleeping thru them or i just took afternoon or nite classes. I have fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome. Now the Drs r testing me for auto immune diseases. U should go to another Dr c if u have fibromyalgia. I take meds for stomach pain to for gastritis & they just diagnosed me with Interstitial cystitis which in my opinion both cuz stomach pain. Try to exercise or do something fun like dancing. Take Super Vitamin B pills and Amino Acids both naturally help with energy. I luv Red Bulls cuz it always does the job. I take GABA suplements the second I wake up cuz it forces your brain chemicals to get going plus its a natural way to help with depression. You can get all that stuf at GNC or Vitamin Shoppe. If its really bad you can always stock a mini fridge next to ur bed with Sugar free Red bulls just chug one when your alarm goes off. Dont take any meds cuz they have bad side effects. Dont drink caffiene after 6pm & dont lay in bed if u cant sleep read a magazine or do some stretching or drink some Sleepy Tea. Hope some of this helps I kno how u feel.
 
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dolphinedsea responded:
Wow, except for the stomach pains, your situation fits me to a tee. I generally need 12-16 hours of sleep, and I'm naturally nocturnal. I've slept straight through 24+ hour periods before. Alarm clocks, music and phone calls don't wake me up like they used to, and I can only get up if someone yells at me 2+ times. I take hours to get to sleep, often even when I'm lying in bed.

I am bipolar, I should mention, although I'm not suggesting that that's your case. I know what you mean about the job situation as well, because I lost my job because of it. Even recently, when I was doing documentary work, something I love, I couldn't wake up unless someone made me.

I can't offer any answers, but can only sympathize. It's beyond difficult when your need for sleep undermines your goals and ambitions.
 
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auntamy09 responded:
i'm 17 and always had a problem waking up. i was told it's because i didnt like my school. so i switched.. my new school starts an hour and a half later, so it helped. but it still wasn't easy waking up. i was told it was depression and i've tried many antidepressants, and finally found one that made me happy when i woke up.. but still tired.

then i started having problems falling asleep, so the doctor gave me sleeping pills. i slept for about 36 hours straight, and missed school, so they told me to take half. i slept for 24 hours straight. so i decided to stop taking that.

over the summer, it hasn't been too bad, id fall asleeo really late, and wake up really late, which i just wrote off as being a teenager. but i fell asleep at 630 one night and slept til 10 the next morning. which was NOT normal.

this morning, i woke up at 10, went back to sleep from 11 to 2 and was still tired. I am always falling asleep.. during school, car rides, etc. it isnt unwelcomed sleep, i never fall asleep driving or walking or talking. just watching tv or borimng classes.

also, i'm numb when i get up. i just cant move. sometimes i get scared im paralyzed and wiggle my toes so i know i'm ok.

dont know whats going on.. but i'm scared for school, and jobs, and college....
 
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jaymac68 responded:
Wow, I feel like I wrote this passage! Everything from hiding away from the door, moving the alarm clock (I even went as far as to put 3 thumb tacks on the snooze button!), I am also 27, I dropped almost every college course that I took before 10am, and I was late for almost every AM event- even golf (and I freakin love golf!). The only difference is , I am a male.

I got to the point where you are at (mentally) about a year and a half ago, I was fed up and I felt like everyone's suggestions were ridiculous and lacked true understanding (especially "just convince yourself it is something that you have to do!). My fianc? is an RN that works the overnight shift at the hospital, so I could not rely on her to get me up. I have made a few changes to my habits, and I actually require LESS sleep, but I almost always wake up before my alarm goes off, refreshed (what a great feeling).

Here are a few of the things that I have done (successful & unsuceesful) to help myself conquer the Sandman:

(NOTE: I am not a medical doctor, nor am I licensed to solicit advice or give treatment to anyone. These are merely tactics that have helped me in a similar battle with morning fatigue. Please consult a licensed physician before making any changes that may affect your body or mind.)

Unsuccesful (or exacerbated my morning fatigue) -Taking medication (narcotic & non-narcotic) -Drinking alcohol -Bed Notes (I would write out my self-affirmations immediately upon awaking) -Morning Exercise (made me feel better during the day, but still had trouble getting out of bed) -Phone calls (I subscribed to a wake-up call service, and set my ringer (in my voice) to say "Get up you lazy piece of crap, tardiness is a symptom of disorganization. And nobody is going to promote a disorganized employee." This worked temporarily, as I am very motivated to get ahead at my firm. But after a few weeks, I just got tired of hearing me talk crap to myself and I wanted to punch myself in the face (like Jim Carey in "Liar, Liar") -Other ridiculous tactics (Including purchasing an air-horn alarm clock and setting the air conditioner to automatically drop to 60 degrees at 6:00am. But after the AC froze over a few times... screw that)

My solution:

First, I wanted to find out exactly why I felt the way that I did. In my research (I am an info junkie), I realized that it was very common for me to wake up in the morning in the middle of my dreams. This means that I was not properly transitioning into and from REM, NREM, (non-REM) and SWS (slow-wave sleep) before waking up. It is like trying to go from running to standing still without slowing down. It seems that the easy solution would be to get more sleep, but if the problem is that you are not getting QUALITY sleep, it will only exaggerate your fatigue by making the ratio of time spent in each sleep stage more skewed. The trick is, to make your body go through these stages not just quicker, but more efficiently. The best way to do this, is to prep your body ready for the first few stages while you are still awake, helping you transition quicker into the deeper stages while asleep.

Now for the things that worked! As with any other major body activity, your mentality is just as important as your physical state to ensure good sleep.

I went to my boss at work and asked him to do me a favor (as a friend, not an employer). I wrote out a check for $500 in his name and told him to cash it if I do not arrive to work at least 15 minutes early. Every time I wake up, the 1st thing I think about is getting to work on time so that I can keep my money! You can vary the amount depending on your financial situation, but the bigger the risk, the more the motivation. He still calls me at 7:45 every morning to make sure I am at my desk.

Physically- Exercise, meditation/stretching, shower, bed... in that order. I do it like clockwork, and now I NEVER feel tired when I wake up, and I require about 1 hour less sleep.
 
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Rocketscinec responded:
You have described me EXACTLY! Except for the stomach stuff! I remember being late for school all the time starting from kindergarten. I have always been 5-10 min. late for work everyday. What's worse is my son was always late for school because of me. He is now 28 yrs. old and he shows up 15 min. early to EVERYTHING now! Anyhow I am 47 and have been battling this since day one. I tried serotonin, different alarm clocks, etc. Nothing worked. I am ADD however and when I started taking Concerta a few years ago first thing in the morning I was magically wide awake. However the ADD is not related to the sleep disorder but the meds have a nice side effect of waking me up. I set it next to my alarm and when the alarm goes off I take my concerta and press the snooze button. After hitting the snooze 1 to 2 times the meds kick in and I am wide awake. I am not recommending taking something you don't need and I know that is not the answer. I wake up in the middle of dreaming so I know my REM stuff is off. The Concerta only helps me wake up and on the weekends sleep till at least noon to make up for my poor sleep.
 
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dmutters responded:
Wow...this sounds ridiculously familiar. I have this problem, which has plagued me since I was a child, and has worsened up until this point. (I am now 27 years old.)

I have a number of health problems, which have been appearing in increasing numbers as I get older: -Type 2 bipolar disorder (depressed or normal, but never manic) -ADD (NOT hyperactive) -Daytime Fatigue -Generalized anxiety disorder -Back problems, for which I take Naproxin Sodium or IBProfin, and occasionally Tylenol -Asthma -Allergies (LOTS of them) -Chronic Bronchitis/COPD -probably others that I just can't remember right now

For the above, I take the following: Albuterol inhaler, advair, singulair, zyrtec (generic), astepro (nasal spray), cymbalta, provigil, abilify, lamictal (generic), and wellbutrin. I have recently stopped taking Strattera, which I formerly took in addition to these. I also drink about 2-5 sodas a day to stay awake.

This has been a terrible challenge for me and those who depend on me in any degree. My wife is very, wonderfully understanding, as have been some of my employers, but now I'm stuck looking for another job, and I don't know how I'm going to manage if the new employer isn't so tolerant.

I have done a $2000+ sleep study to no effect. (They say everything's fine with me...)

I would absolutely LOVE to find a solution to this. If you know of anything that might work, please post! My doctors are all stumped...

--Dane
 
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beccaj218 responded:
Dane:

I totally hear you, because I've got the same problems. I was diagnosed with narcolepsy recently, but I haven't found a solution yet. My psychiatrist recommended Neurofeedback training. It sounded cooky to me (and it didn't help that my shrink is a bit strange), but I've been researching it, and for once, it sounds like it might work. I know what it's like to be paying mountains of medical bills just trying to find out why I can't wake up and constantly sleep 12 hours or more, but I'm holding out for this to work. There are a lot of different places all over that do neuro/bio feedback training. I'd check it out.
 
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holidaies responded:
I want to help my daughter figure out why she sleeps too much. She has gone to a doctor, but believe she would benefit in getting a brain scan at one of Dr. Amens clinics. I also believ e that having a strict schedule everyday and planning, by writting in a calendar, will help. Not staying out late, even one day, until the schedule and STRUCTURE is in place at least 6 months. Behavior and scanning the brain might help to pinpoint the problem. Anyway, you can find Dr Amens website, and contact people with nbrs and advice. Good luck.
 
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Cheddah1956 responded:
I just wanted to touch on your stomach pains as I had problems in my early 20's that went undiagnosed until I had a false positive pregnancy test. It turned out that I had endometriosis which was causing all kinds of problems (including pain that would occasionally make me pass out). I had surgery and the Dr. cleared out all the misplaced cells, as well as a whole lot of adhesions that couldn't be explained, and I easily got pregnant when I was ready to. I was on the pill at the time, and the pain happened at random times during my cycle. I had all kinds of GI work-ups and my stomach & bowel were just fine.

Within the past 12 months I've been sleeping much longer then I used to. I was always an early riser, up with the birds. Now I sleep hours longer then I used to. I had a sleep study and have obstructive sleep apnea and will begin CPAP therapy in a week or two. I can't wait to get back on my normal schedule again! I need the energy to help me lose weight and perhaps the OSA will disappear if I can drop 40 lbs. It's worth a try. I am interested in how my dog is going to react to the CPAP mask! Take good care, Janny
 
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sivadd responded:
Dane,

Your situation catches my eye because I had/have very similar problems. Im bipolar 2, have ADD, and have chronic pain from a botched surgery. An observation I have that hopefully will help:

You are consuming a lot things that can throw off your body. I am not a wacko who thinks chemicals are evil (I take Lamictal also along with Lexapro, Vicodin, and Adderall) but I think there is a limit to what your body can handle. The soda contains caffeine, a central nervous sytem stimulant, which can make your sleep inefficient at night, making 10 hours of sleep feel like 5. Not only that but unless you are drinking diet, the amount of sugar in those sodas can lead to a whole slew of health problems. Also, alergy meds and inhalers can act as stimulants, furthering the problem. Ween yourself off soda and caffeine. Try yerba mate. Has caffeine, but a moderate amount.

Also, provigil and cymbalta have contrasting effects. I would recommend discussing this in more detail with your doctor, if you havent already.

The short explanation of what I did: I took some time off work. It is difficult to do, but 3 weeks off of work can make a lifetime of a difference. During this time I weened myself off of every unnecessary drug (meaning everything except my mood drugs, but your situation is different with your allergy meds). I slowly stopped taking so much vicodin (I only do so now when I cant sleep it hurts so bad) and now only take the adderall in important situatuons. I gave up caffeine. I got over feeling silly and developed a good before sleep routine that included yoga - helps me relax and sleep deeper. I excercise more. There was also a lot more little stuff.

This plan doesnt seem like it would do anything, which was my first impression when my wife asked me to try it out. I thought it would be a waste of time and would just leave me frustrated. But I operate better now and my body feels better. I have more energy and need less sleep. It was a whole lifestyle change, which is a lot of work. But if things are as bad for you as it sounds, then it may be worth it.


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