• How much sleep is "too much"?

    Asked by amontoya on Thursday, July 24, 2014

    How much sleep is "too much"?

    My boyfriend had his last round of chemo in March, he had 4 BEP and 4 TIP and he is always tired. I think he sleeps around 12 hours a day. Is this still normal? Or is it too much? I always encourage sleep and naps and resting but it seems excessive to me. How much does everyone sleep?

    16 Answers from the Community

    16 answers
    • cam32505's Avatar

      I don't know how much sleep is too much. Do you think he physically feels tired or is there some depression contributing to this? The reason I ask is because he is so young to have cancer, he might be very depressed. I would think physically he would rebound from treatment better than an older person.

      almost 6 years ago
    • myronbob's Avatar

      cam might be right about depression, best to talk to dr. ,however with cancer fatigue is huge and sleep is generally a positive . good luck . bob

      almost 6 years ago
    • SueRae1's Avatar

      Hugs, healing vibes and prayers to both of you. Speak with your boyfriend's team about this issue. As Cam said it could be depression, and a referral to therapist and/or Pharmaoncolgist might be helpful. I know that I saw both, and speaking with people who understood the effects of chemo on the body, and every day life very very helpful. My Pharmoncolgist, but on drugs to help take the edge off and feel more like myself.

      I also know that I still need close to 10 hours of sleep most days, and I've been off treatment since the end of Sept. A lot depends on how much I've exerted myself - managing my energy is still an issue. I get between 7-8 hours a night, and nap between 1-3 hours as needed.

      Also have him checked for sleep apnea. People who have this can sleep and sleep and still not feel refreshed, energetic or awake.

      almost 6 years ago
    • katiefnp's Avatar

      I've been off chemo for two months and could and sometimes do sleep 18 hours a day. I do not have depression. Good one SueRae1 about the sleep apnea! I am tall and thin and I have sleep apnea! Hard to believe. I have a CPAP machine and it is life-altering.
      However, what I'd like to add is that 1) I don't think that it is all that strange that he is sleeping a lot.Cancer/chemo really takes it's toll on the body.
      2) He should have lab work to check his thyroid.
      3) My Palliative Care Dr. Prescribed me a small dose of Ritalin 5mg to take when I get up in the morning, then another 5mg four hours later. I could not start or make it through the day without this prescription. It does NOT make me shakey, sweaty or my heart race. I feel human again.
      Good luck. Aloha.

      almost 6 years ago
    • CrazyHarry's Avatar

      When I was on chemo, I slept at least that much. And now that I'm all healed, I've become acustomed to the extended naps. Although my wife seems to have a different expectation.

      Chemo is basically poisoning the body enough to kill the cancer and not kill the patient. It's an extremely difficult time. Some people do ok, I really needed lots of sleep time.

      You are a very special person as a caregiver and should be proud of it.

      almost 6 years ago
    • alimccalli's Avatar

      The fatigue lasted months for me, and I think it was closer to a year before I wasn't sleeping 10-12 hours a day...I still sleep more than I did before cancer, averaging 8-9 hours a night. And it's been 2 years since I finished treatment. I agree that there could be some depression here, or it could potentially be something else. It is definitely worth bringing up to the doctor.

      almost 6 years ago
    • GregP_WN's Avatar

      All I can add is that after treatment was over, I slowly started to gain energy and slept less, felt a little better as I went along, both after chemo was over, and the last time when radiation was over. But still, I can drop and take a nap in a moments notice most days. It's been 5.5 years since my last treatment was done.

      almost 6 years ago
    • barryboomer's Avatar

      As Much as HE needs. Chemo seems to do that.

      almost 6 years ago
    • ticklingcancer's Avatar

      You're really not supposed to sleep more than 8 hours a day. Too much more than that can lead to other health problems. At the same time though, while I was recovering from treatment, I would sleep between 10-12 hours. His body may still be healing and needing the extra rest.


      almost 6 years ago
    • amontoya's Avatar

      Thanks everyone! I should also mention he has muscular dystrophy and I think that is contributing to his exhaustion. His muscles have deteriorated during chemo.

      almost 6 years ago
    • KLC's Avatar

      Amontoya, he may still be anemic from chemo which zaps energy. Check his red blood cell count from last CBC and see if he's low. Make sure he's taking a good vitamin B complex. The liver is also trying to process all the dead cancer cells and toxins from the chemo itself. When the liver is overtaxed, it's normal to feel tired. You can try to get him to help detox by drinking the juice of one fresh lemon in water every morning.

      almost 6 years ago
    • aarongutier's Avatar

      My prayers and blessings for you boyfriend and for you.
      Ii finish my treatments couple of weeks ago...and i'm sure different chimos have different reaction for people or on everyone. I get very weak and tire..used to sleep 8 hours or so..and naps throughout the day..but I noticed that the more I slept the more tire I would get.. cause I wasn't hydrating and feeding myself...I would say to try to encourage him to get up and drink lots of liquids to and walk around for bit, grab a snack, some fruits and go outside for some sunlight for a few minutes...is great..
      That's how my family helped me get trough it.
      I wish u the best.
      Be positive and strong.
      God is wth u.
      God bless.

      almost 6 years ago
    • dougbank's Avatar

      Did you ever deal with the testosterone problem? That could also cause this....


      almost 6 years ago
    • azsuper's Avatar

      I don't think there is such a thing as to much sleep is there?

      almost 6 years ago
    • barryboomer's Avatar

      The BODY lets you know and will just TAKE THE SLEEP.....Let it be and it has an innate intelligence about this and everything else. We abuse our Bodies over many years in this Country and then wonder WHY we get all these various Illnesses. Nothing will totally protect you from things and of course we MUST Eventually Die....but let's be kinder to this magnificent Intelligent Body of ours. We maintain our Cars better....LOL BE KIND TO YOUR BODY TODAY!

      almost 6 years ago
    • bp0023's Avatar

      I finished in march also with Cysplatian and etoposide. Four rounds of five days in a row. Twelve hours a day seems excessive. He needs to get up and walk around. He needs to push himself a little each day. I also had a short bout with depression. I changed my diet and set goals for myself .I am four months since my last cycle and I am back to work and feeling pretty much like my old self. Except for the curly hair I have now. I hope everything goes well for him and yourself. If you have any question you can message me

      almost 6 years ago

    Help the community by answering this question:

    Create an account to post your answer Already have an account? Sign in!

    By using WhatNext, you agree to our User Agreement, and Privacy Policy

    Read and answer more classical seminoma, testicular cancer questions.  Also, don't forget to check out our Classical Seminoma, Testicular Cancer page.