Symptom and description
A good night's sleep is important for your functioning and well-being. However, too
much sleep can be a problem. One side effect of cancer and cancer treatment is sleeping
too much. This is called hypersomnia, which means "too much sleep.''
If you have hypersomnia, you have difficulty staying awake when you want to and try
to. You may sleep 10 hours at night, but still be unable to stay awake during the
day. Hypersomnia is different from fatigue. Fatigue is the feeling of being tired,
but able to stay awake if you try. If you sleep more than 10 hours at night, or if
you are unable to keep from falling asleep during the day after a full night of sleep,
you may have hypersomnia. The most common causes of hypersomnia are your treatment
or your mood.
You will need to recognize the symptoms of hypersomnia, how to describe them, and
when to report them to your healthcare provider. During a three-week period, you may
notice the following symptoms:
This sleep problem is hard to prevent if it is due to your treatment.
If your sleep problem is due to your treatment, your healthcare provider may want
to prescribe medicine to help you stay awake. If your sleep problem is due to sadness
or personal problems, your healthcare provider may either prescribe medicine or refer
you to a counselor.
These tips may help you manage hypersomnia:
Exercise every day
Maintain a regular sleep regimen, with the same wake-up and bedtime every day
Do things you enjoy that require your full attention
Avoid foods that make you sleepy