Does anyone else unintentionally nod off: One of my... - NRAS


34,695 members43,125 posts

Does anyone else unintentionally nod off

BeverleyAnn63 profile image
28 Replies

One of my most annoying problems with Arthritis is the fatigue. It hits me like a train some days. If I sit down anywhere comfy for anymore than 20 minutes I've had it. It can happen very suddenly sometimes, like somebody snaps their fingers and I'm out like a light. Annoyingly after about 9pm I'm fine and often find myself not being able to sleep when I get into bed.

I've fallen asleep with dinner in the oven before, which burnt to a crisp. I can never stay awake long enough to finish a full TV episode. Reading and knitting are also hopeless. What's even more annoying I'll quiet often spill drinks on myself because I doze off holding them. Even ended up getting a chair cover to protect my recliner from spillages.

I would love to know if anyone else here experience unexpected naps.

Take care all xx

28 Replies
rab1874 profile image

Know the feeling happens all the time xxx

Lolabridge profile image

Absolutely! Usually, especially after I've had lunch, I can sense I'm going to nod off and let it happen. Fatigue is so common with RA. I often want to snooze a little longer in the morning too.

It's not happening quite so often now my RA is fairly well controlled.

Neonkittie17 profile image
Neonkittie17 in reply to Lolabridge

Yes exactly what I found and said in my reply too .. when RA is not fully controlled the fatigue tends to occur much more. Good news is it tend to lessen as we feel better on our meds and get the R.A. under control. x

Yep .. fatigue is my worst symptom. I get sleepy while eating. I abandon my meal barely get to the sofa ... instant sleep . I’ve fallen asleep in class before now when children are working individually won’t sit down In Class now just in case

I’m exactly the same! I hate it when I miss the end of a good drama. I can drop off for seconds to 30mins then bedtimes a nightmare! can’t sleep for hours after putting my head down so your not on your own.

Stay well 🤗X

Neonkittie17 profile image

I could sleep on a clothes line As easy as pie

I can't keep my eyes open

No matter how I try…

(Rory Gallagher)

A song I always identified with, from a very fave musician!

I remember a GP once writing I had unprovoked exhaustion to my art college head of course as I had to cancel a trip to New York some years ago, when it became apparent could hardly walk let alone travel to the USA. I asked the GP what he meant exactly and he said .. means you don’t have to do anything to feel totally exhausted. Yup! I was falling asleep all the time and especially if it was warm in the lounge and I sat down on the sofa. I kept setting myself alarms on my phone to wake me up. I felt all woozy and disorientated and thought it was 8.00am as it’s was a sunny summer evening and I got my bag packed to get ready to go to college until my hubby arrived home from an after work meeting!!

I also found the opiate pain patches and other painkillers played a part too with their sedative effects. Is your RA not fully under control at the mo? I found when my R.A. was flaring I was sleeping much more and falling asleep during the day more often. I hope you can feel less tired and also not have your sleep disrupted at night. That’s something I still have trouble with even though my RA is now very much under control. I find if I’ve had a more active day I sleep far better but the problem can be that we aren’t mobile enough to do enough physically so don’t get that tired from movement/exercise feeling. Frustrating! Have you told your rheumy about the falling asleep/fatigue as maybe it’s possible you could be a little anaemic? Nothing serious or that wouldn’t remedy by supplements prescribed by your rheumy. I was rather anaemic in my early years of R.A. Now all that is fine. Also more recently about four years ago I was lethargic and tired due to a vitamin D deficiency. That’s been remedied by supplements and I’m not feeling that excessive dragging myself round type of fatigue.

I do accept that whilst I’m using Fentanyl patches and also after I’ve had my Rituximab infusions that I’ll feel the unprovoked exhaustion my ex doc spoke of. It is annoying to find you’ve nodded off and your drink is spilled or your dinner frazzled. Can you set yourself an alarm on your phone when you sit down to try stop falling asleep so much during the day? Good luck.

All the time lost most of today to sleep 😴

Bluebelle86 profile image

Yeah I'm the same, I can fall asleep at the drop of a hat. My worst is while watching TV, I seem to just switch off very quickly. I also have had drinks spill on me. Only a couple weeks ago I had a full mug of coffee go over my lap because I fell asleep resting it on my tummy.. Very rude awakening!!!

Stay safe x

Obroni profile image
Obroni in reply to Bluebelle86

I find that TV is so b****y boring these days, with all the repeats. that it's a good substitute for sleeping pills! My RA is under control so the other excuse is 'old age'. I wake up when I fall off the washing line!

DRunnerchick profile image

I recently had a consultant call it “profound fatigue” but my Sero-neg RA dx has been in question (and untreated), yet still on my chart since 2017. If I feel tired, I try to get up and walk around.

I was recently given a provisional diagnosis of Stiff Person Syndrome, which is known to ride with SLE and RA so 🤷‍♀️. My money 💰 is on both.


bubblyalex profile image

Absolutely yes from me.

Sheila_G profile image

We record everything so that we can see the rest of it the day after, as we often fall asleep during TV programmes. We put that down to our age. You don't say how old you are. If 63 is your age, that's your answer. If you are much younger it may not be.

MadBunny profile image
MadBunny in reply to Sheila_G

Interesting point about age- I'm 63 and I've been falling asleep more during the day over the last year. My RA is well controlled now so I didn't think it was that. I was wondering if it was the beta blockers I was put on at the end of last year. I must start recording programmes as I often miss the endings!My husband often falls asleep when we're at a friend's house.He also falls asleep at the theatre or a concert. I have to keep an eye on him and keep nudging him in case he starts snoring. Now that would be embarrassing😊

Sheila_G profile image
Sheila_G in reply to MadBunny

This is years ago now but I slept all the way through Independence Day. A very noisy film. I have an underactive thyroid for 30+ years and that makes you very tired even with medication.

BeverleyAnn63 profile image
BeverleyAnn63 in reply to Sheila_G

I'm 57 so I'm near your age. I've got to say this has only started happening in the last few years. So perhaps it's just my age creeping up on me haha. I've had blood tests done and everything seems to be in order. So I guess it's just old time itself.

Tillie20 profile image

Yes mostly invthe afternoon after lunch I feel nausea and just cannot keep my eyes open I know I cannot let it happen so I have to get up and do things if I did sleep that would be if I would be wake all night I have always been a terrible sleeper even as a child so I have been told

Cactiman profile image

Hi know what you mean. I can have breakfast, read the paper then fall a sleep and wonder where the times gone. Even do it in the afternoon. Did have problems getting to sleep earlier this year but seem ok now thankfully.

mjrminor profile image

My RA is mostly under control now, but I still get occasional hits of fatigue - and it's always, always after I've eaten lunch. Comes out of the blue and sometimes it's so bad I can barely keep my head up and have to go lie down.

nomoreheels profile image

Yes I can. Most often it's after I've eaten & I do go for a lie down for an hour in an afternoon & mostly nod off. Countless times in the evening I've had to ask my h what happened if we've been watching a drama on tv. I usually miss the last 15mins or so even if I’ve been enjoying it. Watching TikTok with my headphones on I‘ll go to sleep & wake with something that's been going round on a loop! I can also cat nap though.

holly-willow profile image

I am exactly the same and I feel so frustrated about it all the time. I have so many things that I want to do and I am spending so much time asleep. I even fall asleep over the computer and wake up leaning to one side and nearly falling out of my chair. I have even typed a lot of rubbish and posted it. The most peculiar thing recently is that that I typed in two sentences on my FB page. The sentences made sense, but it was not something that I had done and it concerned me a bit.

I record all the programmes I want to see on TV, but even then, when I am watching them again I have to keep rewinding bits over and over again. I don't seem to be able to watch any programmes without falling asleep these days. Even with a film or programme that I really want to see, after about 15 to 30 minutes I am out like a light. The silly thing is that I often don't realise that I have been asleep for most of it. For instance, last night, my husband asked me who won the children's pet contest in All Creatures Great and Small. I then realised that I didn't have a clue and yet I thought I had been watching it all the way through.

I love reading, but fall asleep doing that as well and the book bangs down on the floor waking me up. The other day, I only had half a page to read in the book and really wanted to know how it all ended, and yet I couldn't even manage that half a page without going to sleep.

My blood tests are fine so it can't be aneamia. I know that if I told a doctor, they would say I mustn't steep during the day, but when it happens without you knowing it, how can you stop yourself?

It is kind of reassuring to know that lots of you are the same, because I have wondered what on earth is wrong with me to make me sleep all the time.

Uga35570 profile image

Yes me too although I'm going through the worst flare I've had in 9 years.

mrawnsley profile image

We all do - my husband is snoring now! It's 20 to 3 in the afternoon! I do to but I can knit without falling asleep - however reading something on the laptop - my husband has often woke me up from falling into the laptop fast asleep!!

springcross profile image

Yes, it used to happen to me a lot before and after I was diagnosed with RA. More recently I find that as soon as we settle down to watch something we've recorded at night (it is usually something we really want to see), about half-way through I start to nod and my hubby switches it off because he knows that as soon as he wakes me, I will nod off again. The problem is, when that happens, like you when I get into bed, I can't get to sleep.

dwsurquhart profile image

I am in the same boat as you Beverley. I am 46, have RA, someday I am fine for 12 hours, other days I sit on the sofa thinking I will watch a program, fall asleep sitting up, and next thing I know 4 hours has gone by. I have woken up with my drink still in hand. 4 hour cold coffee is really not good.

amatrx profile image

It's nothing for me to sit down to watch a program and then wake up 4-5 hours later and I have no problem sleeping at night!

LinaM profile image


LinaM profile image
LinaM in reply to LinaM

Except at bedtime when I’m 😐

Happens to me all the time. I have been known to fall asleep at 10:30am even after a good night’s sleep 😴 My fatigue some days just overwhelms me and it’s so frustrating. Take care xx

You may also like...