Long Sleeping

Long Sleeping Disorder – Research & Treatments

Long sleeping is an uncommon sleeping finding or disorder characterized by the body’s insistence on remaining asleep for longer periods of time than would otherwise be deemed typical. This commonly results in 10 to 12 hours of sleep each night for people with the findings, and less than that leaves them feeling un-refreshed and sleepy throughout the day.

The disorder often begins in childhood, and last throughout the subject’s life. The sleep itself is very normal and deep. The disorder has not been connected to any genetic traits, medical conditions or psychological issues, and remains a relative mystery.

Most long sleepers will be forced to endure shorter than desired sleep durations to keep up with life’s demands, and this can cause numerous symptoms related to insomnia the next day. It also accrues into what is called a sleep debt, which is routinely paid back on weekends when long sleepers will sleep as long as 15 hours to get caught up on lost sleep. Other long sleepers will choose to fully accept the condition and live within its restraints, going to bed at a time early enough to allow for at least 10 hours of sleep each night. Long sleepers will often find it difficult to wake up to alarm clocks, and may be difficult to wake by others, and should ideally set aside enough sleep time so that the body wakes up when it is naturally refreshed.

Long sleeping has been found in approximately 2% of the population, with men at a slightly higher rate of having it than women. It may be difficult to first detect in children, as they routinely sleep more than adults, and are often not given free reign to sleep in as long as desired. Allowing a child to sleep in on weekends and measuring the time slept could be a good indication of the presence of this disorder, if it surpasses 10-12 hours.

A link has been found connecting long sleeping with introverted personality types, which may have to do with the release or lack thereof of certain chemicals in the brain, but no conclusive evidence has been found, nor is there a cure. Long sleepers are advised not to fight the disorder, as it may lead to the development of other sleeping disorders or medical issues, but to instead live within its constraints as well as is possible under their circumstance, and achieve the most sleep that they possibly can without neglecting other aspects of their lives.

The possibility exists that the disorder could be caused by depression or another medical condition, and if it has only recently started, then this is likely the case. In these situations, being examined by a doctor, and having a thorough check of your medical and sleep history performed may root out the problem. In these cases you may be asked to perform an overnight sleep study, or polysomnogram, to have any other sleeping disorders uncovered if they exist. In most cases, maintaining a sleep diary will be enough for the doctor to go on and make a diagnosis in your case.

If the long sleeping is being caused by another issue, that issue should be resolved as soon as possible, at which point the offending long sleeping should dissipate. If the long sleeping is the cause of natural biological rhythms, possible treatments are unknown, and since the level of sleep is of high quality, it is recommended to incorporate the long sleeping into the daily routine as best as possible. Attempting to avoid long sleeping, or staying aggressively awake could lead to other sleeping disorders such as a non-24-hour sleep-wake rhythm disorder, which are far more damaging to social relationships and professional careers than a couple of lost hours of awake time each day.

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  • I have read the comments and at long last I hear other people with the same sleep habits as myself. I am not some kind of freak. I would go to sleep at 5pm, when I got back from work . Even though I had 3 alarms clocks going off I would sleep in and be late for work. This can be embarrassing, and people do judge you. I have taken early retirement, and now I am far more relaxed about sleeping for long periods of time. I also have the most amazing dreams often more exciting than my reality. When I was working, instead of a lunch break I would take a power nap. That would sometimes help. Fruit and veg smoothies, coffee and high energy juices were my absolute musts. It can be lonely, especially when colleagues would plan evenings out and you knew there was no way you could stay awake until 10pm!! It's a stressful condition but knowing I am not the only one makes me smile. Jill x

  • Hi I too have read the above comments and on normal day to day life ie when I'm at work I am 33yr old male and run my own business I go to bed about 10-11pm and wake at 4:30-5:30am I work a physically active job often including lots of driving. However we are now broken up for Christmas and I fall asleep around 8-9pm and sleep in to 9-10-11 the following day I think I'm catching back sleep owed to me through the year?.?
    I always slept well as a child I often used to sleep in my school uniform to allow me extra time in bed my new partner is sort of ok with it however stunned I can sleep so long.

  • I just started researching on the issue that’s been bothering me lately - my accessible sleep, and i came across this. It started about a year and a half ago, as i settled in my new job - i work from 9pm till about 5-6am 4 days a week. I used to sell 8-9hrs and i could never take a nap, because I’d end up having headaches and feeling irritated, not to mention i was never someone who can turn her brain off in the middle of the day and take a power nap. If i slept for 10-12hrs i almost always ended up with a headache, but i also suffer from migraines. Well, that’s how it used to be anyway, now it’s all different. I don’t have as many headaches these days and i certainly not gonna have one just because i slept for 12hrs. When i just started my job, I would come home at around 5-6am, go to bed fairly soon and i would wake up at around 2-3pm, which was ok and i still managed to do errands and have a life. About 6 months into it i noticed that my sleep time gradually increased. I slept till 4-5pm, then 6-7pm, now it’s 8-9pm at times! On my days off i can wake up as late as 10-11pm..stay awake for few hours and sometimes even fall asleep again if i decide to relax on the couch for a bit. I get home from work and can’t go to sleep for few hours no matter how hard i try (sleeping pills, teas, weed etc all work randomly, but for the majority of time none of it works at all). Alarms don’t help, other people trying to wake me fail and get yelled at. If somehow i manage to wake up early enough to, say go hike, i am full of energy and it feels very satisfying, but those instances where i manage to make my self get up are rare. Usually i feel extremely tired as soon as i wake up so i roll around in bed until my body is more or less awake, then i force my self to get going. Few hours later i feel fine for the most part, sometimes however i feel tired throughout entire time, waiting to get back in my bed, but when i finally do i CAN’T go to sleep. The body feels tired but the mind is fully awake, and eyes are wide open - reading something or watching tv because nothing is worse in my mind then just rolling around in bed, forcefully keeping your eyes closed while my entire body feels out of place and mind is racing...I don’t think i have a depression, i don’t take any medication on a regular basis, i am not in debt and last i checked I’m pretty healthy overall. Does my unusual schedule have anything to do with me sleeping so much? It really makes it hard to get things done as i usually sleep through normal business hours, not to mention the embarrassment of having to explain why I’m late so often...Any advise?

  • I am a 75-year-old male who retired from teaching about three years ago. Am in good health, despite several conditions that have to be monitored -- and I get quite a bit of exercise and outside work. I have had several depressive episodes during my life but long-sleeping (if that's what it is) didn't really set in until I was over 70. I tend now to sleep 10-12 hours a day and enjoy sleeping but find the amount to be getting excessive -- partly, I suppose, because I have lots of other things that I like to do. I get the hours either overnight of by shorter night-time sleep supplemented by a nap -- and I nap very easily.

    The overnight pattern is a bit peculiar, though. I typically wake up two or three times (sometimes due to frequent urination, a condition now being treated), but I have no problem going back to sleep. The last wake-up time tends to be around 4:30 or 5 AM, sometimes from a nightmare and I often experience then a pretty heavy sense of depression. (I am reminded of Napoleon's remark that what he really needed in this soldiers was "4 AM courage.") Since I have lived through depressive cycles before and since in general I now have no depression during the day, I simply wait the feeling out and it goes away as I return to sleep.

    That last segment of sleep (until whenever I wake up in the morning) tends though to be the heaviest one... almost as if I was drugged. It is then very hard to get up and I generally roll over and slip back into sleep... which is what makes it a "long" experience. During the day I am quite awake and optimistic, though can feel the need of a nap and am able either to indulge it or finesse it.

  • I have been sleeping for 10-12 hours per night since I was a child. My mom would call me Sleeping Beauty, and wake me every morning (usually to cuss words and yelling) with "Rise and shine, Sleeping Beauty!"

    I had no idea this was a thing. I just thought I was weird. It used to freak me out, about the premonitions, but I just let them slide now. I try really hard to listen to that inner voice. I dream crazy vivid dreams every night. They have intensified since I started my PTSD medication, which is what led me to this site today. These days, I sleep for about 24-30 hours and stay up for about the same. My world is surreal to say the least, but I'm in the Master's program at University of Phoenix online - so I make my own schedule. We moved to Maine about five years ago, so I don't have any friends nearby. Although my schedule is so weird when I explain it to someone else, to me it feels natural. It hasn't disrupted my life so much, as I am interested in what it is and why I am experiencing it. I am a psychology major, and entered into the discipline to try to figure myself out.

    I am happy that this is a thing, and I am not the only one. ♥

    • 10-12 hr. sleep cycle since childhood.
      I am an introvert.
      Vivid dreams.
      Deja-vu symptom frequently.
      24-30 hr. sleep cycle since trauma.
      PTSD, depression, anxiety.
      Dreams intensified since starting Effexor.
      Deep hatred for alarm clocks.
      Skips important things to sleep often.
      Sleep debt symptom.

      • My "sleep town" has the layout of my old city.
        I am able to go right back to sleep, if someone wakes me then goes away.
        I am usually scared and trying to get away from something evil.
        I can't ever remember having a "nice" dream in my life, but I was raised by two loving parents.
        When I'm awake, these days, I'm usually a hermit.
        Since my trauma, people generally scare me.
        The first time I learned of talking in my sleep was at a sleepover in elementary school. Apparently, I yelled "Jimmy" in my sleep. I don't remember it, but I still get shit from my friend for it 20 years later.

  • My personal opinion as someone knocking on 40 and dealing with sleep issues since a child is that it’s a mystery because every person is different and sleep is very personal thing.

    Any combination of issues can be causing. Childhood trauma or association such as using sleep to escape as a habit or technique, diet, work schedules, depression, hygiene, lighting in the room, noise in the room, health problems, physical fatigue, mental fatigue (especially in deep thinkers or people with ADHD) , lack of exercise, lack of social life, sinuses or other breathing problems, air quality in home, dysfunctional sleep cycles, deep dreaming or nightmares, using technology before bed or playing tv while sleeping, etc etc etc etc.

    It’s normal for people to only sleep 5-9 hours a day. I just overslept today and am pretty angry about it as I had things to do. Unfortunately we just have to do the best we can to change lifestyle habits and adapt our lives in a manner that does not allow dysfunctional sleep to be so intrusive or destructive. Good luck all.

    • You are correct Ann. Thanks for your comments. All those eliments contribute to sleep deprivation. Sleep is to heal the body and mind. I just added a comment under "Pookie" Im 74 : life is not given to you, you have to learn to do what is good for the body and mind. Seeking help is the beginning of awareness. Helping yourself and learning what your body needs to be healthy is a choice. We have no excuse. This world is filled with easy tempting choices. And intelligent sources to resolve ones problems with sleep. Good luck and my support to anyone who chooses to do the right thing for your mind and body.. It's not easy, It's a choice.

  • Good Morning. Its 11:15 AM here. You CAN make cahnges that will make your life better. Less sleep and feel great! I've read alot of your comments. TRUE. Some of us just require more sleep. I've 74...don' t run !!! But I have experience. Was this way all my life. 12-14 hours some days. Retired, now I can sleep as much as I want. DREAMS de ja ve. De ja ve happens during the day too.
    WANT TO HAVE A LIFE OF PURE REST AND NEVER TIRED. I have Crohns. My father could also sleep at the drop of a hat. SONS : 41 and 50 , both have to work at night and sleep the rest of their lives. Inherited it.
    Well folks , I kicked it!!!!!! I will always have Crohns disease. But IF YOU WANT to wake up refreshed after a "normal" 9 hours sleep....Listen up. I did it!!!! It works. Its difficult but the results is worth it. Within 4 days of change you will not believe how good it feels to be awake and feel rested. All day long. CHANGE YOUR DIET. Eliminate sweets (sugar) , carbs, most dariy, IF IT'S WHITE DON'T EAT IT. You will have energy, eliminate depression, and feel like you NEVER felt before in your life. It's a difficult thing to do but I DID IT. YOU CAN. First you don't NEED much food to feed your body. Drink water: Drink , Drink , Drink...only water. 64 oz a day. Give it three days. DO NOT EAT OUT> NO FAST FOODS . Veggies, Fruit, Fish , Lamb,White meat, small amount of beef. There are LOTS of books out there, but its comes down to this: You dont NEED all that food. No other animal on the earth eats like we do....except that over weight cat or dog that folks call their baby as they put it in the grave with FOOD. Well books and Doctors and diets and Friends can't change you. Only YOU can seek a better life. I'm speaking as an example. School was so difficult because I was always tired. Could never have the concentration I needed. Doesn't matter how young or how old you are, It is never too late to find out what a healthy life is like. To wake up feeling young, refreshed, and have energy. Another thing: You were not designed to live to eat, you where designed to eat to live. Your freedom and new life is out there: It's in the fruit and veggies department. No foggy head, not run to the coffee to "wake up". YES, you probable have aniema, or thyroid problems or depression. Go get a full check up with focus on your need for excessive sleep. And CHANGE YOUR LIFE. If its in a box, don't eat it!!!! What do you have to loose? Hours and hours of life and happiness.

  • Truly one of the few people on Earth to have the freedom of sleeping and waking naturally for their entire life; I haven't had any responsibilities or work for 32 years now. I sleep very well at sight of dusk light, and usually sleep from 4am-3pm summers, and 6am-5pm winters.
    Lots of muscle, low body fat, probiotic and researched RDV diet across the spectrum, but low in sunlight expsoure as it makes me tired. Regularly need 10+ hours; have commonly experienced 20+ hours, and also seen many weekends where I didn't leave my bed or eat for 2 or 3 day stretches of sleep.
    I can be awaken very easily from the deepest of sleep; footsteps or shispers can wake me up right in the middle of a dream.

  • For the past few years I've been sleeping for around 8 hours per night. Recently (during my 3 month break from uni) I've been going to sleep at around 2-4am and waking up after 12pm. I don't know why I'm sleeping so much more at the moment but hopefully I can make my way back to around 8 before uni starts back again.

  • I am Male 37 years, working in Bank, and continuously sleeping for 12-15 hours at any whare, with heavy snoring. It was first occurred in March 30th 2017, second time in August 20th 2017 and 3rd time on 1st February 2018. From February every 3-4 days it was occurring every 3-4 days.
    The Symptoms are:
    1. Sudden Deep Sleep For 12-15 hrs for every 3-4 days.
    2. Heavy Snoring.
    3. Lost of memory during the sleep.
    4. Blurred vision after wake up.
    5. Sleep test (poly sonogram) and Thyroid, MRI Brain etc, reports are normal.
    Please find the solution for my desordrt