Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

Question on sleep cycles


#1

My stepson is in his early 30’s. His sleep cycles change constantly. He will stay up for 24-36 hours then sleep for 12-16 hours. For instance he may wake up at 5pm and stay up all night and into the next day. First is this normal for people with SZ? it is very rare that he will be on a “normal” sleep schedule. If he does it will not last long.


#2

Mine shifts around a bit but its pretty normal. I just keep falling asleep at 3 pm and waking up at midnight. Ideally I’d fall asleep at midnight or 2 am and wake up at 10 or noon. Gotta get that switched back around.


#3

What do you do to get yourself switched around? Do you have someone encouraging you? or do you take the initiative to do it on your own?


#4

It’s been about a week and a half of this. The night time is typically a lot cooler and there aren’t as many people about. There are benefits. I was going to try and have it switched around by today but I got everything done I intended to do. If I can stay awake for another 8 to 10 hours I’ll be back to normal by tomorrow. That’s all fluff though, I have to take initiative. I live alone. Even when I was living with my mother I’d still slip into nocturnal phases at times. If he can stay awake for 24 to 36 hours with SZ then something else might be going on. Mild insomnia perhaps.


#5

so you are functional to where you have things you do and accomplish? My stepson during his awake hours basically does nothing. He may play some video games. If allowed he would drink mountain dews and smoke as much as he could. Any desire he has to do anything seems to go no where. He forces himself to stay awake to the point he gets to where he is staggering around


#6

Hmmm… I mean my responsibilities are few and far between. For the most part I am sitting or laying there listening to voices. I do manage to get my bills paid and feed myself.

It’s hard to sort out. I don’t know the details of his illness so its hard to see where is difficulties stem from.


#7

thank you for responding… he lives with his mother and me. She does not have guardianship of him, so she cannot go into the pdoc with him unless he lets her. I believe there is more help out there for him. I can’t do anything. He doesn’t want any help. I hope one day he will want help.


#8

It’s a tough situation. I had to fight the illness. I didn’t know what else to do.

It’s super tough. I know where he’s at. Not exactly but I’ve been in a similar spot.

Good luck. It’s good to hear he’s working a bit.


#9

My son goes through cycles. When not doing well he gets his days and nights mixed up. He will also stay up for over a day then crash. Sometimes I have tried planning an outing so that he stays more awake during the day then try to get him to take Melatonin and his medications so that he will sleep at night. His meds are no longer sedating but they do help quiet his mind so that he can sleep. Alcohol will interfere though and cause him to cycle to an unhealthy habit.


#10

Melatonin supplements eventually reconfigure the brain to produce less melatonin on its own. After about 6 months or so I’ve been running into trouble sleeping without melatonin or ambien. I’m not to happy about it. I didn’t want to become dependent on the stuff. Just a warning.