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According to doctors there is no such thing as sleep addiction. But I beg to differ. While I was at work today, disputing whether I should sleep or not because it was dead, I decided to look up to see if I had a problem. According to several credible sites I googled and Wikied, there is no such thing as an addiction to sleep. The only thing I found that seemed like it was my condition was Hypersomnia: "an excessive amount of sleepiness, resulting in an inability to stay awake" now that seems a little more along the lines of Narcolepsy doesn't it? I could stay awake; my body doesn't shut down out of nowhere.

'Cause really they say any sleep is healthy for you, that there isn't really anything unhealthy about it. But if you look at more of a perspective here, there can be alot of things wrong with too much sleep. Physically it can cause some muscle disorders, back problems, promote overweight-ness, Restless legs syndrome, Periodic Limb Movement Disorder, Scoliosis.
Too much sleep, they say, is a product of a chemical imbalance due to depression, though I think it is altogether possible that too much sleep causes depression. (Especially when it comes to people who think about how much time they wasted sleeping when they could have done something constructive, thus causing themselves to get depressed and sleep more.)

Socially it can be crippling. Try to make friends when you sleep more then 15 hours a day, or keep em if you make any at all. Often a sleep addict, like me, EVEN if I have friends over or am at a party, would steal away moments alone in a room to sleep. Thus no social interaction, but my fix for sleep is momentarily sated. And for lack of social interaction, someone who is addicted to sleep may just escape into the dreams they entertain, where friends always are. And then that can always lead full circle into depression... loneliness... more sleep. 'cause sleep makes those feelings go away.

well let's back away from social and physical effects of sleep addiction for a moment and address the definition of Addiction: "...a compulsion to repeat a behavior regardless of its consequences... a chronic pattern of behavior that continues despite the direct or indirect adverse consequences that result from engaging in the behavior. It is quite common for an addict to express the desire to stop the behavior, but find himself or herself unable to cease."

Now, let's look at actions due to "addiction to sleep" in accordance to the definition. If an addict does indeed carry on with addiction without any thought for consequence to their actions, then by definition a sleep addict would perhaps:

:worry:Sleep even though s/he has an important engagement
:worry:Sleep even though s/he is hungry or needs to eat
:worry:Sleep even though s/he hasn't gone out in months
:worry:Sleep even though s/he needs to go to work
:worry:Sleep even though s/he needs to go to school
:worry:Sleep even though s/he has not seen friends in weeks
:worry:Sleep even though to do so physically hurts them

That sounds like the actions of an addict who does not recognize, immediately recognize, or ignores consequences.

If you look at another addiction that is still disputed but is very much real, Internet Addiction, then there is really alot of questions raised of what really is addiction. After all the internet is considered to be a pro-social medium, but it also does a great deal in isolating the addict, does it not? Therefore it becomes an addiction. Just because sleep is considered good for you, does that mean that too much of it isn't socially, physically, or mentally hurtful to the addict?

I am a sleep addict, and it's not just a crackpot excuse or anything like those who throw around that they are dyslexic or that they have ADD. It's real. I'm not falling asleep uncontrollably; I make a conscious decision to go to sleep rather then stay awake, even when being awake might be more productive, fun, or healthy of me. And like an addict I have behaviors an addict would have:

:worry:I think about the next time I get to sleep the second I wake up.
:worry:I am satisfied when I sleep and when I wake up I barter with myself on whether I should go back to sleep or not.
:worry:I look at the clock and say "just a few more minutes" or "i have nothing to do, I might as well sleep".
:worry:I skip spending time with friends and family in favor of sleep.
:worry:When I am out with friends or hanging out with friends, I search for someplace to fall asleep without being disturbed or found out, even though I am wide awake and enjoying their company.
:worry:I try to convince friends to sleep along with me cause it feels good (no lie, and no I don't mean sex)
:worry:I sleep to escape stress.
:worry:I sleep to escape hunger.
:worry:I sleep to escape making decisions.
:worry:I sleep to escape boredom.
:worry:I get angry and defensive with people when they try to dispute or criticize my sleeping habits.
:worry:The pull to sleep is so great that when I try to stay awake it's gives me symptoms of withdrawal. (scratching skin, clenching teeth, biting nails, snoring while awake, hard of breathing, yawning often, shaking)
:worry:If I had no job I could pull 17-19 hours of sleep a day.
:worry:It feels so good to sleep that I would pass food and sex over for it every time.

I know this is a real disorder. Me writing this is kind of a therapy, cause really if I wasn't writing this I would be asleep right now. Even as I write this I fight the pulling urge to sleep. Only my lingering post-IAD keeps me on.

Do I need help? Am I the only one?
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:iconanondreamer:
anondreamer Featured By Owner Mar 12, 2011   Artisan Crafter
I am addicted to sleep. It's always on my mind. Always thinking 'When can I nap next?' or 'Is it too early to go to bed?'
I hate it. I wish I could be a "morning person", hell, just a normal person. It is cause great strain on my marriage. I fear it's affecting my children. I'm 25, and have been addicted since puberty, I suppose. I've been on countless anti-depressants, with no avail.
I'm terrified, if things don't change, my husband will leave me. I've actually considered taking speed, just to make it physically impossible to sleep.
I wish I had the answer.
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:iconanondreamer:
anondreamer Featured By Owner Mar 12, 2011   Artisan Crafter
I am addicted to sleep. It's always on my mind. Always thinking 'When can I nap next?' or 'Is it too early to go to bed?'
I hate it. I wish I could be a "morning person", hell, just a normal person. It is cause great strain on my marriage. I fear it's affecting my children. I'm 25, and have been addicted since puberty, I suppose. I've been on countless anti-depressants, with no avail.
I'm terrified, if things don't change, my husband will leave me. I've actually considered taking speed, just to make it physically impossible to sleep.
I wish I had the answer.
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:iconisoldel:
isoldel Featured By Owner Jan 5, 2009  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Just read this journal and instantly thought, "Omg, this is just like me!" I love to sleep to escape and to dream because I've developed much self control within my dreams. I can do anything I want and I'm aware that it isn't real. It sounds weird/crazy/freaky but it's pretty cool to know that I can control my nightmares, fly around in the air (although it's more like swimming.) and control what events happen next.
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:iconeliea:
Eliea Featured By Owner May 10, 2006  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
:) I love to sleep. I used to nap all the time. NOw I can't and find myself wishing I could. I do know that It's addicting, it feels good, and you feel better when you wake up. I get grouchy when I can't sleep at least 8 hours at night. If I have 7 I'm like a slug at work, any less it's worse.
Oh and caffine I'm totally addicted to caffine. Soda or pop, coffee, energy drinks whatever. It could taste like dirt And I'd probably drink it. Just becasue I've gotten to the point where if I don't have it I get tired, headaches, and feel horrid.

I also actually have dyslexia. I've been diagnosed. I can't stand it when someone makes a joke about it like it's no big deal. (which is not what you did. seems like we have the same dealio with it. lol) Becasue it's really hard, reading, writing doing math everything. Very frustrating. But that's not what the issue is. lol

Sleep is definetly addicting.
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:iconcristiyana:
Cristiyana Featured By Owner May 4, 2006  Hobbyist Photographer
Huh. That's funny. I have bi-polar and I take meds and such. But here lately, I've been wanting to go to sleep more often. I'll pass up internet time for sleep and to and from work I try to go to sleep (my mom drives me to work and dad takes me home since he is my boss). Maybe there is such a thing as sleep addiction. Who knows. All I know is that sleep is a great thing to do.
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:iconaseariel:
aseariel Featured By Owner May 3, 2006  Hobbyist General Artist
maybe people claim that there's no sleep addiction because its symptoms are synonymous with other disorders? the fact that people who are depressed may have a sleep addiction as well does not necessarily imply causality.

as to your actual question, i sleep to escape things i don't want to deal with. i don't think i'm depressed; i think i was for a long time, but it's different now. i sleep to get out of eating, or doing work. the only one who really gets on my case about my sleeping habits is my dad, but i do get really irritable and defensive when he does (whether this is because he is my father, or because i have a sleep addiction, i cannot say).

so yeah. i don't think it's just you.
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:iconbunnystick:
bunnystick Featured By Owner May 4, 2006  Hobbyist General Artist
It's altogether possible that the symptoms as listed could be bits and peices of other disorders. i dunno. though every suggestion to look into for some facts i have taken in gratitude.

though the only suggestion i think to be poorly given is "this is obviously a desperate and peralious cry for help, you are mentally unstable, you need some couchtime, get a shrink." i mean.. goodness. dun let poeple belittle your problems in such a way if they do, luvie.

but my thought experiment was more an observation of my symtoms that have worried me in comparison to those of whom that i know are addicted to substances, you know? the behaviour seems similar.
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:iconaseariel:
aseariel Featured By Owner May 4, 2006  Hobbyist General Artist
indeed. there are some very interesting parallels.
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:iconlyndzeeee:
Lyndzeeee Featured By Owner May 3, 2006   Writer
I'm tired alot also D: I think it runs in my family, yeeeesh

I actually thought it had to do with a chemical imbalence related to hypothyroidism. It seemed to fit perfectly, but tests came back negative. I am puzzled :/ what's troubling is that my limbs fall asleep all the time, sometimes one of my ears stops working, and I'm often confused about simple situations, which seems like a problem with oxygenation... or I'm just naturally like that...

But I digress, it is possible, in my opinion, for sleep to be an addiction. An addiction is something for which you have a physiological or (I think...) psycological dependence. If sleeping changes your chemical balences, such as dopamine, then yes, I think it can definitely become an addiction. Release of dopamine is one of the things that make some drugs so addictive.

Maybe it isn't classified as such because sleep is an action, not a substance. Maybe you've simply conditioned your body to expect that much sleep, and that is what is making you so tired all the time.

I dunno >_< I tired and go to bed now. My point is, you aren't alone with that sleep problem thingy, eh? :D
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:iconbunnystick:
bunnystick Featured By Owner May 4, 2006  Hobbyist General Artist
it has been suggested that my body expects to sleep so much and at certain times of the day. and you would think that if you tried you could get yourself out of such habbits, but getting out of those comfortable sleeping habits is near painful.

your effect sounds a bit more physical then mine which may indeed be psychologically induced as this point and causing physical reaction. one of my friends suggested that my sleep dependency may be a form of control based on past history of not having control over my situations and therefore i get nervous habits like scratching and shaking and such.

i've no idea.
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:iconspazbunny:
spazbunny Featured By Owner Apr 30, 2006
When I was in highschool- I failed because I slept through everyone of my classes. No joke- I would wake up long enough to go to my next class. I even slept on the two hour long bus ride home (as well as the ride on the way to school) If my mom wouldntve come in and griped at me- I wouldve slept the moment I got home as well.
It may be from stress. I think thats what mine was from. But I think I understand what your talking about. I found I cant nap anymore after I pulled myself out of it. If I do- Ill come really close to going back to it. You might want to talk to a dr about it- tho I have a feeling that all theyll tell you is that its something you have to train yourself with. You know- the whole "Start out pushing yourself to stay awake as long as you can until you cant hold out anymore" then just keep pushing yourself. And if you cant do anything with that- Im sure there's a source thats causing you to want to sleep all the time, and Im sure theres a way to deal with it.
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:iconicedblood:
icedblood Featured By Owner Apr 30, 2006   Digital Artist
I have never felt that, I only sleeop when I'm tired. I suppose I have no problems with that so the only thing I can relate to is whene I'm tired I will do anything to sleep, give up anything and I'm a very social person. That want to sleep is the only thin I can relate to with your problem except you actually just want to sleep, you are not tired.
Thats a strange problem. Have you seen a doctor? What I mean to say is, does someone else know about this? Because they should, you could cause yourself harm.
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:iconshellybunny:
shellybunny Featured By Owner Apr 29, 2006
I have the same problem. I come home from school and decide to take a nap, then fight myself to wake up and get on the internet. If it weren't for the fact I want to talk to my boyfriend I would just not get up. In fact there are times I opt to sleep instead of get online at least 2 more hours. Then when I get offline and go to bed I can't go to sleep for an hour because I don't really want to sleep right then. On weekends I go to bed whenever I feel like it , which is usually 2 or three times a day. I don't have to sleep, I just want to because I'm bored. I go to sleep when I'm hungry too and put off eating until I wake up. I am addicted to sleep, no doubt about it. I avoid going out with friends to sleep. In fact, I want to sleep right now. If I weren't on here, I would be.When I wake up in the morning the first thing I do is think about how much sleep I can get when I get home in the afternoon.
The only times I can fix it is when I occupy my day with work and such.
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:iconbunnystick:
bunnystick Featured By Owner Apr 29, 2006  Hobbyist General Artist
yeah there is something about repetitive reliable routine like a steady job that can keep sleep addiction at bay for a few hours. i dunno what it is. though the fantasy crops up quite a bit at times.

the weekend is kind of a golden time for me, i take cruel advantage of my pillows for hours, ignoring the want to socialize cause sleep is just much more rewarding in my head. my bed/couch is so abused with my sleeping that if i dun get a new bed/couch i'll be impaled on what is left of a pullout sofa underneath.
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:iconshellybunny:
shellybunny Featured By Owner Apr 29, 2006
My poor bed and sofa are already attacking me. I sleep on the couch during the day and it's worn all to hell, plus I need a new mattress on my bed.
I always feel sleep is the most rewarding, too. The amazing feeling of letting those eyelids close and sprawling out. Oh it's amazing.
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:iconginkage:
Ginkage Featured By Owner Apr 29, 2006  Professional Artisan Crafter
I'm hypersomniac, too. You're not alone. :)
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:iconbunnystick:
bunnystick Featured By Owner Apr 30, 2006  Hobbyist General Artist
and i luv you! :glomp:
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:iconbunnystick:
bunnystick Featured By Owner Apr 29, 2006  Hobbyist General Artist
if it was as easy as being a Hypersomniac, i wouldn't be bitching about it. lol cause i'm not tired when i get the urges to sleep. a key factor of Hypersomnia is sleepiness.

i guess it's hard to imagine... :blush:
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:iconcatzilla:
catzilla Featured By Owner Apr 29, 2006  Professional Traditional Artist
I love sleep too... I would do it all of the time if I could get away with it. I don't have this strong of a compulsion to do so though. I hope you work things out :(

I do think I'm addicted to the internet though. It's not even fun anymore..... and yet, here I am, sitting, staring at a screen, typing, scanning, whatever, for at least 3-4 hours a day... an hour if I'm being good.
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:iconbunnystick:
bunnystick Featured By Owner Apr 29, 2006  Hobbyist General Artist
i got out of my internet addiction cause my sleep addiction was far stronger. my computer broke and i had no internet and i actually went through a fit cause of it, but then i realised how nice it felt to sleep and sleep i did!

but i think a good way to cut on your internet addiction is to take the opportunity to go out when you are invited to. even when you think you might not have fun. i found that when i was addicted to the internet, i would doubt in my ability to have fun outside the cage of the web. such is not true, my dove.

as with any addictions, it must be a fight of mind over matter.
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:iconcatzilla:
catzilla Featured By Owner Apr 30, 2006  Professional Traditional Artist
I think winter pulled me farther into the internet without me realizing it. I've definately been going out more now that the sun is out longer though! Thanks for the advice though, and much luck to you with the sleep. I totally understand how good it feels.... I love it. And I have really vivid dreams that just make me want to stay in bed forever.
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:iconicia:
icia Featured By Owner Apr 29, 2006  Hobbyist General Artist
i sleep to escape reality. plain and simple. i looooove sleep.
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:iconbunnystick:
bunnystick Featured By Owner Apr 29, 2006  Hobbyist General Artist
well that there is one of the symptoms i listed. kinda. using sleep as escapism
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:icontsukino-hikaru:
tsukino-hikaru Featured By Owner Apr 29, 2006  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I've had an experience like this before, over a year ago. I do believe it started due to a depression, but now I also link it to the pnysical place I lived in at the time. Why? because about a year back, I lived in that room again for a month, and I lapesd back into that sleepy/depressed state.

I found that having someone to talk to, someone that could pull me out of that room helped a lot to make me break the sleeping habit. But yeah, I had various spells of sleeping almost 20 hours a day, for a whole week.

Yes, I did flunk classes that year. I'm still paying for that.
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:iconbunnystick:
bunnystick Featured By Owner Apr 29, 2006  Hobbyist General Artist
it's a wonder why i even got through school at all with a diploma. the school must really have been crap cause i barely got past it with my addiction. i threw myself into books to stem the lust for sleep, but when school ended, back i was to bed! fortunately when i was IN school i had a moderate social life. but once i got out of school, noone saw me.

i guess that having places remind you of sleeping to get away from depression is kind of like a sleep depression flash back
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:iconsmitetheewithapples:
SmiteTheeWithApples Featured By Owner Apr 29, 2006  Hobbyist
Some sources say that not enough sleep is bad for you. Whilst others say that too much sleep is bad for you. I don't think we know as much about sleep as we pretend to know.

But no, I don't think that definition of hypersomnia sounds like narcolepsy.
Narcolepsy - Narcolepsy is a chronic neurological disorder caused by the brain's inability to regulate sleep-wake cycles normally. At various times throughout the day, people with narcolepsy experience fleeting urges to sleep. If the urge becomes overwhelming, individuals will fall asleep for periods lasting from a few seconds to several minutes. In rare cases, some people may remain asleep for an hour or longer. In addition to excessive daytime sleepiness (EDS), three other major symptoms frequently characterize narcolepsy: cataplexy, or the sudden loss of voluntary muscle tone; vivid hallucinations during sleep onset or upon awakening; and brief episodes of total paralysis at the beginning or end of sleep. Narcolepsy is not definitively diagnosed in most patients until 10 to 15 years after the first symptoms appear. The cause of narcolepsy remains unknown. It is likely that narcolepsy involves multiple factors interacting to cause neurological dysfunction and sleep disturbances.
Hypersomnia - Hypersomnia is characterized by recurrent episodes of excessive daytime sleepiness or prolonged nighttime sleep. Different from feeling tired due to lack of or interrupted sleep at night, persons with hypersomnia are compelled to nap repeatedly during the day, often at inappropriate times such as at work, during a meal, or in conversation. These daytime naps usually provide no relief from symptoms. Patients often have difficulty waking from a long sleep, and may feel disoriented. Other symptoms may include anxiety, increased irritation, decreased energy, restlessness, slow thinking, slow speech, loss of appetite, hallucinations, and memory difficulty. Some patients lose the ability to function in family, social, occupational, or other settings. Hypersomnia may be caused by another sleep disorder (such as narcolepsy or sleep apnea), dysfunction of the autonomic nervous system, or drug or alcohol abuse. In some cases it results from a physical problem, such as a tumor, head trauma, or injury to the central nervous system. Certain medications, or medicine withdrawal, may also cause hypersomnia. Medical conditions including multiple sclerosis, depression, encephalitis, epilepsy, or obesity may contribute to the disorder. Some people appear to have a genetic predisposition to hypersomnia; in others, there is no known cause. Hypersomnia typically affects adolescents and young adults.

What you've explained kinda sounds like hypersomnia but it also doesn't. I wonder if you can have a mixture of hypersomnia and addiction...all these definitions are confusing. You should become a sleep doctor and revolutionise the world.

I'm tired all day. But my problem is that I'm an insomniac. No matter what time I go to bed, I can't fall asleep straigght away. Usually it takes me an hour to fall asleep. I'm sensitive to light and sound and wikipedia says my room sound be kept quiet and dark. Ha! I live at college and some idiot thought it would be a nice idea to remove the curtains and instal blinds that let all the light in. And this is the city, it's never quiet here.

Sleep sucks.
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:iconbunnystick:
bunnystick Featured By Owner Apr 29, 2006  Hobbyist General Artist
the factor that doesn't seem to fit with a diagnosis of hypersomnia is that: i am not tired. i am never tired when i want sleep. being tired never comes as a factor to why i want to sleep most of the time. i make a conscious decision in a "sober" concious state to sleep rather then be awake. in theroy, i have complete control over my descision to sleep, yet i don't because it is controlled by a dependency mechanism i cannot understand...

it is possible that i may be addicted to the Neurotoxins that are released in sleep. When the neurotoxins are in circulation, they can affect the brain and cause hallucinations, which we experience as dreams, since we are asleep and can't act on them. when people become sleep depraved they can go through the hallucinatory effects of Neurotoxins while being awake. "If we go too long without sleep, the sequestering sites begin to fill up, the body's ability to sequester neurotoxins degrades, and more and more of them slip into the circulation, causing pathological cognitive, mood, behavioral symptoms, and fatigue."

of course being an allergy sufferer i may also be a problem of Histapenia where my levels of Histamine is wacky.... but then i would be tired and i am usually not. though if i go through a rancid sneezing fit i sure will feel goofy!

i am so glad i don't have insomnia. i hope you find a comfortable setting to sleep in, cause sleep is delicious.
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:iconheartbat123:
heartbat123 Featured By Owner Apr 29, 2006
I totally understand what you are going through, because I am going through the same thing. All I would get from my doctor was that I am depressed and taking so and so pills can help. Yea, they didnt help. they made me sleep more. I remember sleeping from the moment I got back from school (3:30-4pm) till I had to get up and get ready for school the next day (6-6:30 am). Maybe I'd get up to eat soemthing and use the bathroom, but mostly i slept.

When I moved out on my own, I'd sleep from the moment i got off work (midnight) till half an hour before i had to go back in to work (1:30 pm) and then i would go home at my lunch hour to sleep. I'd skip college classes in favor of sleeping. I missed final exams in favor of sleeping. I totally flunked out of college due to this problem.

Now I have the disorder where I cant feel sleepy till late late at night, and cant force myself awake early in the morning, even if i go to sleep early.

There are some fucked up disorders out there, and i DO think sleep is like a drug. Sometimes i sleep and dream so vividly, or realistically, that my mind confuses dream from actual memories. (now THERE is a problem)

good luck with it all, and i wish i had some advice to help you, but i am still ass deep as it is.
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:iconbunnystick:
bunnystick Featured By Owner Apr 29, 2006  Hobbyist General Artist
sleep must be a drug. there has to be chemicals that are released when you sleep that we don't get when we are awake. especially dopamine. Dopamine released is like the feeling of complete euphoria since it's associated with the pleasure systems of the brain and is in the family of adrenaline. and it is a natural occurance in the body, along with many nerotoxins.

it may be possible, if at all, that your brain confuses dream memories with real memories because the addiction could be strong enough to assosiate your addiction with your everyday life. as a normal occurance. the friends you might make in your dreams could be just as funny and personalable as any real person out there, so by any means they must be real to a mind that knows only them. which might be a product of lack of social interaction due to the all encombassing effects of a sleep addiction.

humans are social creatures. and when they have their social life robbed of them, they find ways of making a new social life for themselves. poeple who sleep 19 hours a day have no social life, except in their dreams. therefore the events that happen in your dreams are like fond memories of social events that never happened but might as well have cause you spent your time dreaming about it.

you may not have "advice" but sometimes association is the first step to understanding and in understanding one can give advice.
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:iconmadkittenproductions:
I had that... I would sleep, go to school, spend atleast a minute to go to class, sleep the last three minutes.. I would fall asleep in class and stuff, then on the bus... Man... All I say is try to find things to fill up your time till bedtime.. That's what I did.. Still slightly sleepy, but hey, I'm lazy. xD
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:iconbunnystick:
bunnystick Featured By Owner Apr 29, 2006  Hobbyist General Artist
i did that when i went to school. and inorder to curb my sleep addiction i tried to introduce a new addiction. and since i didn't like cigerettes or drugs, i used the internet. but my addiction to sleep was infact to strong after a year and a half of I.A.D. that i broke that addiction to return to sleep addiction.

is that healthy or what? :blush:
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