Karen Hoyt is a blogger who has a story about hepatitis C, cirrhosis, end-stage liver disease, liver cancer, and liver transplantation. This excerpt first appeared on Karen’s I Help C blog.
Advanced liver disease can create problems with your dream time! Without enough sleep, it is hard to battle fatigue, achiness, and brain fog. I had hepatic encephalopathy from Hepatitis C and my sleeping was messed up for years. I took sleeping pills and they made me even more groggy during the day. Here is help from someone who has been there.
When you can’t sleep with liver disease
Day Sleeper – Reverse Sleep Pattern, or RSP can be common during the later stages of cirrhosis. It is where you feel drowsy and worn out all day, signaling your body to sleep….. wherever it can. That can be inconvenient when it happens on the job, in the middle of a conversation, or while driving. Seriously, it can be a signal of the onset of hepatic encephalopathy.
Eyes Wide Open – The whole world is shutting down for the night and you’re buzzing… wide awake. You may even feel nervous or anxious because you know that sleep is necessary. It can kick in a night of excessive worry. When your body is so so very tired – but your brain is flitting around like a firefly – it’s no fun.
Chat About It – Your family may wonder why you want to lay around all day. Boost their awareness by showing them this blog. Let them know you are not just lazy. Let them know you are learning some tips for getting a good nights sleep. Ask for support – and a little mercy! If you have feelings of embarrassment, be kind to yourself. You’re not the only one going through it – many of us suffer from RSP.
Round the Clock – Because our circadian rhythms get disrupted, our body doesn’t get the signal to sleep at the right time. You can end up taking several naps a day. There are a lot of problems with that. First, you end up sleeping off and on all day and night. But – you only get a few hours sleep at a time. This does not allow your body (and brain) the longer period of sleep it needs for restoration.
Click here for Karen’s tips on how to improve your sleep and to read the rest of this blog.