Avatar universal

Constant dreaming

I'm 30 yrs old.... ever since I could remember, when I sleep, I dream all night long... Even if I just take a short nap, Ill have a dream. During the day, I'm fighting this tiredness and fatigue that nobody else can relate too. Most days it takes all I got to force myself thru a day of normal tasks. It's always been frustrating to me. I'm not depressed, but I am very frustrated because in my mind there are a lot of things I would love to do or need to do but just don't have the energy to do it! This has been going on since I was abut 12. But never thought it was unusual until recently when I started to research narcolepsey. I went and seen a sleep specialist and he swore up and down that I had sleep apenea and schedule a sleep study for that... But the were no disrupted breathing during that study... So the nurse calls me up and tells me to keep a sleep diary for two weeks and the dr will start investigating for narclepsey. So it seems that he didn't believe me in the first place that I thought I had narcolepsey in the first place! I think it's because I don't have cataplexy. I'm just confused... I'm just wondering if it sounds like I have narclespsey? Am I going in the right direction? Is it normal that I constantly dream from the time I go to sleep to the time I wake up, even during naps? I have also had episodes of sleep paralysis. I'm just so tired of being tired and fatigued all the time!!!! No amount of caffine works! Ugh! Someone help!!!!!
16 Responses
Avatar universal
I don't know much about the connection between certain sleep disorders and dreams, except for sleep apnea. Also, just because your one test was negative, does not exclude sleep apnea. It has been proven that much of the time a person with obstructive sleep apnea (not sure about central sleep apnea) can have a test done and it will come out negative, but another test proves otherwise. I think it would be wise to be tested again. And it may help the test result show up positively if you go in when you are very tired. Because whether it is central or obstructive, if you're lacking sleep, it might more easily show up since your brain and muscles will be even more tired.

However, I am soon to be tested for it due to the fact that I have multiple symptoms of sleep apnea, minus the most common one (which does not have to be present in order to have it).
There is a connection between sleep apnea and the dreaming. I too have dreams every time I sleep, and usually multiple ones every time. They are also VERY vivid. They seem extremely real most of the time. Very detailed. This is apparently due to the fact that when you have sleep apnea and stop breathing repeatedly, it keeps your mind in a certain stage of sleep, the stage where dreams are most vivid. The stopping and continuing of breath may also be why there are several dreams, perhaps the process keeps starting all over again.

Sleep apnea would also explain why you feel so tired. I often wake up feeling as if I haven't even slept, but instead was overworking myself horribly. I feel worse when I wake than before I went to sleep, more tired. My muscles are extremely weak, my chest hurts, as if it has not had enough breathing exercise, my heart will be racing at times, and I feel horrible.

Hope this helps, let your doctor know that you are aware that sometimes a test will come out negative, but another may not. If they don't believe this, speak to me and I will try to provide you with all of the proof I can. Though you may tell them if they were to look it up online, they would find the same thing.

If this doesn't help, then good luck in finding your problem with a doctor.
Avatar universal
I think that my girlfriend has something like that(http://www.medhelp.org/posts/Sleep-Disorders/vivid-dreams-nightmares-but-no-rest-pls-help/show/1124702) although she doesnt have the paralysis. I have seen her sleep and havent seen her stop breathing(Im no expert though) I've also noticed that she doesnt have REM, she looks like she is peacefully sleeping but her brain is working and she is having vivid dreams, in the morning she feels like she didnt sleep at all. Not even ambient or herbal teas have been able to relax her to the point in which she doesnt have those vivid dreams. I've been trying to find out how to help her but no luck on knowing the name of the sleep disorder, she is feeling depressed and frustrated and she is supersensitive and get irritated easily. Any ideas? I know we should have her take a sleep study but Im not sure if insurance covers it, I also heard those are very expensive.
Avatar universal
I actually read your post about your girlfriend. I was in the middle of commenting to you on it when my boyfriend came home, and I stopped and didn't return to it. Her taking anything that would sedate her, if it is possibly sleep apnea, could actually make it WORSE. Drinking alcohol or taking sedatives before bed can be bad for people with it.
From what I read, it sounds very possible that your girlfriend may have sleep apnea. If so, the question would be which type. Obstructive, or central. Sleep apnea actually IS linked to very vivid dreams and nightmares. And the feelings she is having are very likely due to her poor sleep regardless of what it is.
It would also make her feel very exhausted when she wakes, among other symptoms that she may or may not have when she wakes up.
You could have missed her breath stopping, unless you watched her many nights and the entire time she slept on those nights. She may look peaceful, but that doesn't mean her breath's not stopping.
I'm unsure of whether or not insurance covers the test. But I am soon to find out myself. I would think it would, especially since sleep apnea is considered pretty dangerous. It doesn't only mess with your sleep, which messes with your health anyway, but with your heart and brain at least. It's taking its toll on both of mine, and it also leads to strokes over long periods of time sometimes.
If you want to talk more about the types of sleep apnea and what they mean, let me know, or look them up.
But you should definitely call and find out if insurance covers it. I doubt it wouldn't.
Avatar universal
thank you for your insight on this. I've been reading on several forum and my roommate just finished his masters in psychology. my theory is that this might not be apnea but the root of the problem might be PTSD, I know that she has had many traumatic instances in the past 5 years before she met me, i know that she has bottled up all these feelings all throughout the years and havent been able to treat them and release them, she has feelings of guilt and depression. I read that PTSD can show up many months or even years after the traumatic incidents and it will cause depression, feeling of guilt and affect the sleep architecture.
I spoke with a friend of mine that is an acupuncturist and she suggested to read about the Worsley Classical-Five Element Acupuncture. Another option might be a therapist that treats PTSD.
What are your thoughts about this?
Avatar universal
That may be possible as well. It would also make sense. There are so many symptoms that are the same in so many different mental or physical problems that it is very hard to diagnose many things quickly. Some things require a lot of time, and elimination of other possible causes. And some require a lot of tests.(Unfortunately too many doctors are too quick to jump to the most common things without being as thorough as they should be, even when it comes to rare things that go misdiagnosed for years or a lifetime in people, due to the doctors all looking for something commonly seen, rather than going outside the box). Since you're unsure what is wrong, I suppose you should start with what you think is most likely and try to treat that. If it doesn't work, then maybe you can consider that one eliminated and try the next. But if it doesn't work doesn't necessarily mean it is not the problem. So good luck in what you try working, once you hit the right thing. And good luck in finding it soon enough.
100309 tn?1328041299
Look into Epic Dreaming Disorder. I have had three different sleep studies, and although they would like to tell me it is sleep apnea, all three were negative. Only after many hours of research, and contacting a few people who were actually interested in sleep disorders, did I find out that I have Epic Dreaming Disorder. I am sure there will be more out on it in the next few years, as more and more doctors become aware of the fact that it actually exists.
Yes! I have it too! No matter how long I sleep, a few minutes, anytime within an hour, or a few hours, I always wake up from dreaming. I wake up as tired as shen I went to sleep. I've had it as long as I can remember, even as a child. My sleep study revealed I had less than 20 minutes of modetate deep sleep in 8hrs. Basically no 'restful' sleep at all. I think it comes from having an overactive brain and it doesn't know how to switch off at night. Relaxation to calm the mind before bed might help, but I'm still looking for a solution!
Did you ever find a solution ?
Avatar universal
HI ,
I am Ramesh .I am also having dreaming throughout night .I consulted a doctor .He told me it's because of not sufficient of vitamins .He prescribed some muti-vitamin and trace elements tablet . I am taking tablets from today onwards.Give me two weeks time. I will tell you whether it stops dreaming throughout night or not .
Avatar universal
i too have the constant dreaming every night and in naps for well over a year. i tried general doctor, who gave me aniextyand sleep meds,which made coming out of dreams worse, sleep apnea doctor, which dream with machine on and causes chest pains, and now female doctor, which is trying hormone patches, all to no avail, dont know what to try next! thought i was crazy till i saw this sight, any help as to where to turn nextwould be appreciated
Avatar universal
Hi vlouie, I am 41 and have had narcolepsy since I was 18 and in the Navy. I also have been diagnosed with PTSD (meds and talk therapy), sleep apnea (using a c-pap which helped reduce snoring and headaches but not much of the sleepiness) for 7 years. I also have vivid dreaming for what feels like all night long. Just started Modafinil, now I'm still a night person because I live alone and can't wake up early enough to take it.
Avatar universal
I've been dreaming all night long for the last few years. My naturopath says the problem is caused by an over abundance of Glutamate (a neurotransmitter). I I've determined that I have either Alpha EEG Anomaly or Epic Dreaming Disorder. I take GABA Mood Assist by MD Nutritionals (Gamma-aminobutyric acid) and a sleep formula by Nature's Own containing Ziziphus and Lactium. The two in combination seem to be returning me back to normal sleep, night after night. The process has been slow, but at least I've found a natural remedy that is working!
Avatar universal
Any updates/ improvements?

Did your naturopath do a NT test? How do you feel now?
Avatar universal
Any updates for anyone? I am interested also if anyone tried gaba? Any students coping?
Avatar universal
Hi, I know this post is old, but just in case the original poster is still checking this out, I wanted to suggest something else to look into. What you described is a condition that I have called "hypersomnia". Which means hyper-sleepiness. When I was first diagnosed, I could function during the day until around 2pm, after which I could not stay away much at all. I also remember my dreams as well. My condition is actually called "idopathic hypersomnia." Which means the hypersomnia is severe. I cannot stay away physically without medicine. My sleep doctor has run many tests and does not know the cause. I believe it is from years of resurfacing memories, night terrors and ptsd. I really wanted to find a way to get better but so far it has only gotten worse. I am on Nuvigil. I tried Lyrica and it really messed up my thinking. Hope this helps you or someone else.

Does the Nuvigil cause headaches?  I took provigil 10 years ago and it helped but caused the worse headaches I've ever had--I couldn't take it anymore.  I take adderall 3x's per day and literally can't function in my job without stimulant medication.  Have you had success with amphetamines?  Curious on all of your treatments you have tried for idiopathic hypersomnia.  I can tell you my situation is serious when even drinking a coffee plus 10 mg of adderall plus a few lines of cocaine and I'm still yawning and tired.  
Avatar universal
I experience similar symptoms as you.  I don't have an answer for you other than to say that wakefulness medications such as provigil, nuvigil, and amphetamines may help you.  Everyone freaks about taking adderall, but people that take their recommended dosages and are honest with their doctors I have read typically do just fine.  Tolerance can be an issue, but I have been taking adderall 10 mg X 3 times per day sometimes 4 times per day if needed and it literally saved my career.  I am not working above and beyond the normal 40 to 50 hour week usually... I am trying to do good in my job and be normal like everyone else doing the 40 to 50 hour week that only needs a cup of coffee to stay active.  I can drink a cup of coffee and go to bed.  

Did you have any luck figuring this situation out?  Any advice?  Doctors?  Clinics?
Avatar universal
I am 74 and have had this for as long as I can remember along with frequent headaches.
I finally saw a real sleep medicine doctor who knew right away that it is epic dreaming. However
he said not much is known about it or how to treat. He gave a prescription for Modafinil to make me feel better upon waking. Bandaid??
Avatar universal
I have had sleep maintance insomnia for almost 3 years.  I wake up and have trouble going back. Lately my dreams are frequent and intense. They wake me often only to start immediately after falling back. This interrupted sleep makes me extremely tired dizzi with leg fatigue.  The dreams seem to be the source of the wake ups and poor sleep.
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