Lack of sleep can definitely cause irritability. If he is dreaming frequently, then he is not getting much good sleep either. We dream during the REM stage of sleep - not during a deep sleep. Hopefully the doctor will prescribe him something, but in the meantime he can try taking Tylenol PM or Benadryl, which might help him sleep better.
Lavender, is a nice way to get relaxed, you could try him with a nice lavender bath oil just before bed, you acn either put the oil in his pillow, or you could put it on his sheets, you can also put some dryed lavender around the bedroom.
You could also have a look on earthclinic under his symptoms, and do a post to Ted.
It does sound like a sleep disorder. The sleep study will hopefully be helpful. In the meantime, could one of you sleep in another room? It might be worth the money for a good inflatable bed if you don't have a spare bed or a comfy couch.
Yes you are on the right track. He needs a sleep study done while his brain is hooked up to EEG. It sounds like he is going into deep sleep type rythmn too soon when he is not fully asleep or is ina lucid state. Im just guessing. ONLY A DOCTOR CAN MAKE A DIAGNOSIS. The irritability can be from lack of sleep. BUT NEVER STAY IN A SITUATION OR RELATIONSHIP THAT PUTS YOU IN DANGER! I would not sleep together until he gets this under control. The sleep study will answer a lot of questions. Until then, just give him your support.
He tried taking melatonin but that only seemed to make it worse.
He's not mean and he would never hurt me intentionally, he's just easily irritated by minor things.