I have never had a single full night's sleep in my entire life as far as I'm aware. Maybe, when I was unaware, as a child, but I don't know for certain. I still remember having interrupted sleep when I was a baby.
I also have very poor memory, extremely vivid and realistic dreams (often nightmares), exceptional dream recall, regular sleep paralysis (sometimes several times in a week), lots of lucid dreaming and learning difficulties. I don't suffer from migraines often (twice or three times a year at worst), but when I do I have some strange symptoms. Dark spaces make it worse while exposure to light eases the pain slightly. When I have a migraine I also vomit continuously for many hours, suffer very severe lethargy, body aches and pains, anxiety and panic symptoms. Sometimes I wonder if it's more than a migraine and I sometimes think I'm dying, because when people talk about migraines it never seems this bad.
I had a brain scan at a children's hospital when I was a pre-teen as a result of sleep paralysis and the doctor said that there are some areas of my brain that are over-active and that my sleep, memory and emotional control would all be affected. However, he didn't want to admit that overall he really didn't know what was wrong, and called it epilepsy (because I was having sleep paralysis a lot and he didn't know what that was, neither did I at the time). I have never had a fit or anything like a fit in my life.
I remember when I was a child I would always wake up during the night. I saw it as a perfectly normal routine, I didn't know there was such a thing as a full night's sleep. I thought it was normal to wake up FULLY ALERT at odd hours of the night and then take a long time to fall back asleep. That's not to say I didn't find it annoying.
I have always woken up easily. Slight creak of the floorboards at the other end of the house could stir me into full alertness. Which leads me to my exceptional hearing capabilities. I wonder if this has something to do with it. The frequencies I can hear are much higher than normal for someone my age, and I am very sensitive to loud noises and avoid them at all costs. Loud noises make me feel very anxious and irritated.
When it comes to waking up from sleep, I never really seem to get that half-awake feeling unless I'm locked in a sleep paralysis episode, or just about to be. I'm either fully awake or I'm asleep, there is no in-between. People such as family members are often amazed at how quickly I can leap out of bed (literally) seconds after waking up with no grogginess or dizziness or desire to fall back asleep. I have never sleep-walked nor sleep-talked, nor have I ever really been able to move, I am fully paralysed in my sleep.
I don't think these are all good things though. I have found myself lately unable to learn new things in my waking life, even though I dream very vividly when I do sleep. I don't usually have any problems falling asleep, about half an hour does it, as I said it's waking up during the night and then having trouble falling back asleep that's the problem. Or on some nights I don't have much problem falling asleep but I might recall fully waking up about five or six times in one night.
So, right now it's alertness and memory that's being most affected. I am alert when it comes to my environment and physical activities, for example I have very good reflexes when sparring, I notice things in the environment that some others do not such as stellar patterns, presence and prevalence of local plant and animal species, etc. However, when it comes to words, numbers, facts, figures, and abstract skills, I lose so badly. Heck I still haven't figured out what the word "abstract" means. I have a definition but it doesn't make the slightest bit of sense to me. I can only guess, and if I'm correct, I don't grasp abstract concepts well at all. I tend to take everything very literally. Including sarcasm (mostly because I can't be bothered with sarcastic people so I take it literally just to get them to stop but sometimes because I can't identify the sarcasm).
I'm worried these problems are all inter-related as I've never been able to socialise well my whole life and am discalculaic, on top of that memory problems that prevent me from learning new concepts and skills lately. However, as I said, doctors don't want to admit they don't know what's wrong so they keep putting it down to "that time I was diagnosed epileptic with the additional brain abnormalities".
I don't buy it. There's something wrong and it has been getting gradually worse, someone out there can identify it. Just not these NHS dopes (no offence to the NHS workers who aren't dopes, shame I can't find you guys anywhere).
Welcome to the MedHelp forum!
Lucid dreams, stress and sleeping in supine position are the main causes of sleep paralysis. You are definitely suffering from some sleep disorder other than sleep paralysis. If you get up in middle of night, it can be also be due to sleep apnea. Loss of memory etc are due to incomplete sleep. Please consult a sleep specialist and get sleep studies done. Take care!
Thanks for the welcome, but I'm not a new member I've been here for a long time.
I doubt it's sleep apnea. I don't get the daytime sleepiness (actually once the sun is up I'm positively awake and alert until it sets again) and I actually barely ever snore, I'm not overweight (actually a little skinny) and I don't have diabetes. Also, just as I'm about to wake up I am aware of my own breathing and body functions, because I'm self-aware when I dream most of the time and I'm self-aware during the waking process. So although possible I don't think it's likely that I have sleep apnea. What it feels like to me is that I get so excitable in my sleep and when I dream that I wake myself up by accident all the time. Usually when my heart beats really fast out of fear but also when I have a fun lucid dream, I accidentally wake myself.
Unfortunately I've already seen a sleep specialist and they say it's just epilepsy and I'm just going to have to deal with it!
Amoeba, all of your symptoms - EVERYONE of them - point to Asperger's syndrome.
The inability to understand the abstract, having social difficulties, sleep paralysis, waking fully, and you may not realize it but you come off as abrasive.
I don't know if your migraines are related - I have migraines and they have been so excruciating that I've wanted to die, and have heard others describe it that way - so sounds pretty typical of a migraine to me.
Check out the Asperger's forum on Medhelp and see if it sounds right -
Well, I don't know that I come off as abrasive but I don't intend to. If I sound that way rest assured it's not personal and it's just the manner in which I type. Just pleasantries (or lack of them) don't transfer well over a medium where you can't hear the other person's voice or see their face. I think I'm just a bit blunt in what I say and don't flower up my speech.
I have seen counsellors and psychologists in my teens, none of them suggested I had any behavioural condition and in fact even suggested I didn't need to see them because I seemed perfectly sound of mind. So if I had something like Asperger's it probably would have shown up about then. However, my grandmother as well as other members of my family have expressed concerns that I may have it, so I'll try to see if I can see some kind of specialist who might be able to tell me what they think about it.
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