Saturday the 31st of May 2014
Here is a list of everything I have taken, as recommended by health professionals in Taiwan.
I have been suffering from hypersomnia for about a month after having spent a good five months unable to sleep at all. I’ve been going to bed around 12:30AM and getting up around 12:30PM… or around 2:30AM and sleeping until 2:30PM the next day etc. I have genuinely missed entire days (on the weekend) where it seemed like I must’ve just needed to catch up on sleep even though I’d slept through the night. I yawn constantly and feel excessively tired in work which leads people think I haven’t slept at all when actually I might’ve had eleven hours or so. A month is way too long; I missed a workshop and decided to see a doctor. In order to actually see the morning now, it feels as though I just shouldn’t go to sleep at all.
Early Monday morning dentist appointments are usually followed by sleep before school, even though I’ve slept during the night. I feel like a teenager, as though I’m still growing even though I’m not, I’m a healthy adult (in terms of weight, fitness level, mental stability etc.), I shouldn’t be this exhausted. The medications I’m currently taking are numbers one, two, three and thirteen (see list). These medications were prescribed when I told the doctor about my extreme over sleeping, general tiredness and sore throat. I don’t feel like being social and I force myself to stay awake, alert and enthusiastic so I won’t be judged by people but it seems to be taking its toll. I find myself wanting to rest my head on the toilet roll holder at work so I can have a little nap in the bathroom half way through the school day. When I’ve planned all my lessons and there’s no one else in the teachers room I put my head on my arms and try to rest a little, even though as I say, I’ve had more than enough sleep.
So, what are numbers one, two and three? 1. Thiamphenicol, an antibiotic, usually used as a veterinary antibiotic, but is available in China, Morocco and Italy for use in humans. 2. Lisamin, or tranexamic acid is used in various other medical conditions but mainly to treat or prevent excessive blood loss. 3. Volna-K, or diclofenac potassium, is used to relieve swelling (inflammation) or pain from various conditions.13. Unlabelled Multivitamins, with iron, as I’m now malnourished, I should also point out that it’s not always clear if someone is malnourished, although most people associate the word with an emaciated body, this simply isn’t the case.
I cry a lot, I’d say I cry almost every day. No one has been able to help me with that. My grandmother on my mother’s side told me she doesn’t cry, at all and that she can’t remember the last time she cried. I believe her. I can’t remember the last time I didn’t cry. When I was at university, one of my triggers was not sleeping, as well as stress, not eating correctly and certain kinds of over stimulating social situations etc. I was diagnosed with epilepsy in 2010 and yet since moving to Taiwan, I haven’t had a seizure, or at least (due to me living alone) I definitely don’t think I have, not a grand mal anyway. My tongue has been damaged once or twice during sleep but I presume that might just be from bad dreams or something. It feels a little swollen at the moment, as though it was scratched by my molars. I’m starting to wonder whether or not I probably should’ve braved the John Radcliffe hospital stay when I was down in Oxford. Perhaps this strange lack of followed by too much of sleep situation might’ve been prevented had I actually gone through with it. I remember being asked to stay in the hospital around the time of my degree show, so instead of going I kept myself incredibly busy as I didn’t want to think about it.
I don’t like hospitals. I don’t like being in hospitals, I don’t like visiting people in hospitals; I don’t like the corridors, the signs, the smells, the sounds, the seating areas… I do like that they exist, I like the doctors and nurses, the other members of staff, I like that people are born in hospitals and that people die in hospitals, I like that people can be saved and healed in hospitals, so really, when I say I don’t like hospitals, what I mean is that I don’t like the way hospitals affect me, psychologically. Hospitals in Taiwan are very public, as are doctors, dentists and physiotherapy clinics. It seems as though there is usually always more than one person being seen at a time, I’ve mentioned this in a previous post but every medical scenario here reminds me of a hair and beauty salon, a lack of privacy.
An average of ten or more hours a night is not healthy, in fact, it has been linked to a host of medical problems, an increased risk of death, depression, diabetes, heart disease, and obesity. I’ve been hit by a car a few times and I’m pretty sure I wasn’t sleep cycling so I suppose over sleeping and not having a proper sleep schedule here might’ve contributed to that.