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  1. heyarnold

    Nurses with Narcolepsy

    I have been a nurse for 22 years and have had narcolepsy my whole life. It was officially diagnosed 5 years ago, along with severe obstructed sleep apnea. I take my meds, follow a strict sleeping and napping schedule, eat healthy and still have my down days. I will have to argue with one of the statements from before, it will not always be controlled just by taking your meds correctly or following any one strict plan. Narcolepsy like any other chronic condition, is unpredictable in it's characteristics. You have an idea of what your body and mind will do in certain circumstances, but there are no promises. Everyone reacts differently and has varying stages of the condition that may not work with just taking meds and being rested. Some days I would be able to make it through a 12 hour shift, some days I would need 1 nap, and other days I wouldn't be able to drag my body out of bed even if it was on fire. Your best bet is to disclose your condition to your managers and co-workers. Narcolepsy is more than just sleep. Lack of sleep causes all kinds of other issues that you and they need to be aware of, brain fog, loss of memory, slow response, grouchiness, depression, poor judgement, fine motor skills, gross motor skills, etc... There are so many variables. I know that if I have a very busy weekend or am around a lot of people that I will have a down day to make up for it. And some days, I can be the most rested person and still have that really fatigued feeling like my body and arms are trapped in heavy water. Understand your body, how it responds to Narcolepsy, and be truthful with those around you.