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Can Insomnia really cause these symptoms?

I have been having a MAJOR issue with my boyfriend lately. For the last four months, he has exhibited some strange symtoms. He will appear to "fall asleep" in the middle of anything. I put "fall asleep" in quotations, because at this point, I'm not even sure that's what he's doing. He could be in the middle of eating, talking, standing, playing a game, etc, and all of a sudden his speech with slow/slur/stop, his eyes will close or almost appear to roll back, his mouth will open, and his head will drop down. Seconds later, he will snap back to "normal". Sometimes he will instead just walk around with half open eyes and almost appear "drugged". The most frustrating thing is, he doesn't even remember or realize that he's doing it. I can tell when he is about to enter one of these episodes because it's either preceded by an episode of some form of mania (meaning he will be overly excited and hyper, sweating, etc) or by slurred/slow speech. It also appears to happen at around the same time intervals (from 6 p.m. - 9 p.m.). It actually has become quite a strain on our relationship because he has had these episodes in front of my family, in front of my boss at dinner, and just about every other inopportune time possible. Some people have even thought he might be on drugs.

I have confronted him about it, and most of the time he denies it. The rest of the time, he has fed me a million different reasons for his behavior, including medications (blood pressure meds and/or xanax), blood sugar/eating problems, and the latest: insomnia. He stopped taking Xanax months ago, but the symptoms have persisted. I have never noted that he has trouble sleeping, because when he is around me, he's constantly sleeping. He claims this is because he is "comfortable" with me and doesn't sleep otherwise when I'm not around. What I'm really wondeing is if insomnia can really cause all of these symptoms, or if I should be worried about something deeper, like drugs or serious health problems. He has had a host of health problems, including an enlarged heart and even early colon cancer (which was treated). He also has had a past history of using steroids.

I would appreciate any kind of insight I can get, even if I need to post this question elsewhere. All of this is really starting to worry me.
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1000392 tn?1294093912
Hi there!

I don't know if I'll be of any help but I'll try... my mom had colon cancer amongst other health issues.

She has those "episodes" exactly how you describe them. She didn't notice them at first but with time, she's now aware of it. She'll have them while she eats, middle of the day, chatting ect...

The doctor has never been worried about it. The only difference is, my mom has to take lots of meds because of her horrible health. She takes about 27 pills per day. She's also on pain management treatments because of her diabetes and chemo. So we've always associated the episodes with the meds. She's always exhausted.

She had an episode one day where she couldn't even remember who I was. She was lost. Didn't know where she was, what day it was or that she even had children. we brought her into the ER and they said it was caused by an intern in the pain management department that had given her the wrong med.

We're not the ones going through it but it's just as difficult for us to handle it! It worries the hell out of me and it scares me. Try to see if you could "convince" him to see a doctor. Just to be sure.

On another note, I noticed that it happens when her blood sugar is low. When it happens, see if you can't ask him to check his blood.

Unfortunately, we cannot force someone to get checked. Make him aware of your concerns and make sure he knows that you're simply worried about him and his safety.

Best of luck and keep us posted!!!
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Avatar universal
YOU DID NOT SAY IF YOU SLEEP TOGETHER.  DO YOU?  DOES HE SLEEP ALL NIGHT OR DOES HE WONDER AROUND.  
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1006279 tn?1250428721
My insomnia kid of cycles like that too.  As a matter of fact, a year ago after having several days of insomnia I rolled my car down an embankment, trapping myself inside upside down.  I had fallen asleep at the wheel in the middle of the day.  
My episodes weren't as obvious as your boyfriends.  More that I kind of zoned out, and drifted off.  I could get pretty hyper too,  Slap happy, as they say.  
I had trouble convincing my boyfriend at the time I was having trouble sleeping because I slept pretty well when we were together.  I may have trouble falling asleep, but once out I could rest pretty well with him.  I don't know why it was like that.  
Some of the medications my doctor had me try made things worse rather than better.  I was still unable to sleep but was obviously drugged.  
I read a great book called Say Good Night to Insomnia.  It's a good way to help without medications.  
It didn't fix the problem, but I'm better than I was.  
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