After having sickle cell crisis on a regular basis, over the years I have found getting to sleep a challenge. After getting several strong doses of medication during a crisis, my body is completely out of whack! From eating, going to the bathroom, to moving around, and falling asleep. Sleep is extremely hard to come by after a crisis, when night~time arrives like some shiny black limo to drive me off into the wonderful world of sleep, the damn thing pulls off before I can step in and get comfortable.
This has happen so many times it has become the norm. There are nights, many that I have watched the sun come up without one ounce of sleep.
Here are a few side effects from not getting any sleep….
Serious Sleep Deprivation Side Effects
- 1. Stress, and being easily irritated are very common traits of someone who is suffering from long-term sleep loss. They will be easily angered and have a hard time keeping a cool attitude.
- 2. A weakened immune system is something that you will not want to have. This means that you will have a MUCH easier time catching colds, the flu virus and any other type of common disease. It can also increase your chances of catching something that is life threatening.
- 3. Cognitive functioning will also be impaired as well. Having a hard time thinking, moving and just using the brain in general will be much slower than someone who sleeps well at night.
- 4. You can expect your reactions to not be up to par and even sluggish. Try playing a video game that requires quick reactions and you will see exactly what I mean.
And at one point in my life I have experienced each and every one of these! I can completely side with the Micheal Jackson…just wanting to sleep like your kids, in a sound slumber sleep~ Peaceful and natural. Well …for ME, it takes a good two months after a crisis to just about get all the meds completely flushed out my body when a hard crisis hits. So for 6 to 8 long weeks I am up most of the night trying not to take anything so my body can get back on track. Its very hard, difficult, sometimes I don’t make it and “Ambien” here I come! (Which is just as difficult to get to sleep without)…It’s a never-ending rollercoaster.
I remember someone told me, Oh go walking or do something physical a few hours before you go to bed…LMFAO!! I looked at them like they lost their minds. By the time I’ve missed a few nights of sleep my body has no energy to do anything and one ,”overexertion”-Anything will throw my body into a violent sickle cell crisis.
Over the years I’ve attempted Yoga, Meditation, Reading, all late at night and have not been very succesful. So far there has been one online virtual game (secondlife.com….I’ve been there since 2006) that has caught my attention, helps me to relax and take my mind off sleep, sickle cell, and kids. So for now that is the place I venture to when sleep is playing hide & seek from me, but I still don’t fall asleep til almost 2,3 sometimes 4am….Yes! This is Lack of Sleep in the world of Sickle Cell~
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