I was watching a program last night on UK television called “Rescue Dog to Super Dog”. It was a show where abandoned dogs were being paired up with people who need help with their disabilities or health conditions. One of the recipients of a trained rescue dog had a condition called ‘narcolepsy’. I do not know anyone who has this problem but remember suffering with one of the symptoms in the past, known as ‘sleep paralysis’.
What is narcolepsy?
Narcolepsy appears to be very debilitating and can actually have a huge impact on sufferers’ lives. The symptoms are excessive sleepiness, known as EDS (excessive daytime sleepiness), mental fog with memory lapses, lack of concentration and loss of energy, exhaustion and depression, which is hardly surprising. This particular person (Emily) had cataplexy too, which is a sudden loss of muscle tone causing weakness and loss of muscle control. It can result in slurred speach and even worse, a total body collapse. Emotions, such as stress, excitement, laughter, anger etc., seem to bring on an attack. Other symptoms are hallucinations which are often vivid and usually visual. They are called hypnagogic hallucinations when they happen with sleep onset. If they occur during awakening they are known as hypnopompic hallucinations.
Another frightening feature, which, as I mentioned, I’ve actually had myself in the past, is a temporary inability to move or speak when falling asleep or waking up. With me it was always waking up. I would wake and know I was awake but I couldn’t move, talk or even open my eyes. It was really unnerving. It took all my willpower to actually open my eyes. Once I managed to do that, the attack seemed to slowly abate and I would gradually be able to move. It was something that happened in my younger years but I don’t seem to get these episodes now.
The fear of cataplexy
Emily, who used to have an active career as a nurse, apart from having narcolepsy , suffered badly with her cataplexy. In fact it was this that affected her confidence the most. She would be walking down the street and suddenly just collapse in a heap. This, of course, was very worrying for her. Apart from possibly hurting herself, she could be in danger of getting mugged or set upon whilst having this cataplectic fit. This was her main fear and she felt very vulnerable, which probably exacerbated her attacks.
These episodes lasted a few seconds to several minutes and when they passed, she recovered fully until the next attack. She was having around 30 of these episodes every day! The rescue dog (Poppy) would be trained to lie down by the side of her when she collapsed and protect her until she revived.
To cut a long story short, the dog, after many hiccups, became her saviour. Her morale picked up tremendously as did her confidence. She started participating in activities she hadn’t done for a long time. As well as this, Poppy helped her to relax and become more confident. Her condition was now under control and she would be safe when out and about. She and her boyfriend started to live again, all because of this faithful boxer cross who changed their lives.
Similar symptoms to Magnesium deficiency?
After watching the program, I was pondering over the symptoms and realised that many of them were similar to Magnesium (Mg) deficiency symptoms ie. muscle weakness, fatigue, depression, brain fog and memory loss and sleep disorders to name a few. Then upon looking further I noticed that many forums advocated taking Mg for narcolepsy.
One writer got very excited upon finding Magnesium: “Holy bananas, so I’ve tried a couple of days without Provigil and just Magnesium. Bammo, its been euphoric plus one! But wait, what is ALL this energy? If narcolepsy is as simple as a Mg deficiency, I’ll be damned…”
What about tourette’s?
Did I tell you there were two recipients of these rescue dogs? Well there were. The other was a young man called Alan. He suffers from Tourette’s, a very distressing condition manifesting in uncontrollable tics, noises and gestures. His allocated dog was called Parker, a lovely looking black labrador, very intelligent and eager to please. Alan changed Parker’s name to Duke. The dog was completely calm and unphased by Alan’s outbursts and they soon became inseparable. Again, much work had to be done by the trainers but this dog was particularly amazing, learning quickly and seemingly enjoying his work. It was really funny to see the dog pull the duvet off Alan when the alarm went off in the morning. Alan had a tendency to stay in bed because his medication made him sleepy. Also, he was obviously depressed and distressed by his condition but this dog brought him out of himself. Alan soon found his tics and gestures abating with the help and support of Duke.
Again, I thought to myself. Tourette’s also has similarities to Mg deficiency. Muscle spasms, tics, jumpy, anxious, sleep disorders. But the most important indicator was that stress and emotional feelings exacerbated the symptoms, just the same as Emily’s narcolepsy and cataplexy.
I had a look for some forums for tourette’s and found many of them advocating Mg as a treatment. Here are a few comments from parents of children with tourette’s:
“One of my sons had the beginnings of Tourette Syndrome when he was little – eye blinking, facial twitching, eye tics, etc. . . . We changed his diet to get more magnesium rich foods and give him magnesium supplements for a few days crushed in yogurt. It worked great. The tics, twitches and eye blinking all stopped within a few days. We made the diet changes permanent”
“I think it is so true that Mg supplements reduce tics. It helped our son for sure. I can’t believe why the so called experts still dont seem to have a clue..”
“I find it odd that kids with tics, twitches and other signs related to Tourette Syndrome do not seem to be regularly checked for magnesium deficiency”
And this from an eminent doctor:
“The muscle contortions that characterize Tourette syndrome are increased by stress and associated with anxiety, depression, and sleep disorders. Since all these associated conditions are affected by magnesium, it only makes sense to look at magnesium deficiency as a possible cause. Research has defined the central role of magnesium deficiency in Tourette syndrome, and this bears further investigation” (Carolyn Dean, M.D., N.D., The Magnesium Miracle, p.70)¹
There is one condition though, that is related to both these illnesses and that’s stress. The stress of having the problem in the first place, the stress of dealing with it on a daily basis and the stress of knowing you’re different and your quality of life and the lives of those around you, has been diminished by the condition. In Emily’s case, it was also upsetting and stressful to know her boyfriend was having to deal with her condition too. He is a caring and patient man but Emily knew that her narcolepsy and cataplexy put a burden on both of them.
Be calm, cool and stress free with Magnesium
I only wish I could talk to Emily and Alan. They have a good part of their condition sorted with the help of their faithful companions who are no doubt reducing their stress and boosting their confidence. If they knew about the magic of magnesium too, they would find their conditions slowly melting away, even to the point of reducing or stopping their prescription medication! Stress is the biggest depleter of Mg and the funny thing is Mg is an amazing de-stressor. It will relax you and change your mood to calm, cool, collected, chilled and composed. This mineral is incredible and the changes start immediately.
For me, magnesium has removed my brain fog, put me in a permanently good mood, controlled my frustration and quick temper, given me an abundance of energy… All my conditions have disappeared including insomnia, headaches, depression, muscle spasms, back pain, anxiety, eye twitches, digestive problems, leg pain, palpitations, lethargy, lack of focus. I will be taking this mineral for the rest of my life.
- Grimaldi BL, “The central role of magnesium deficiency in Tourette’s syndrome: causal relationships between magnesium deficiency, altered biochemical pathways and symptoms relating to Tourette’s syndrome and several reported comorbid conditions.” Med Hypotheses, vol 58, no. 1, pp. 47-60, 2002
12 thoughts on “Narcolepsy cure?”
This is a very informative article. I used magnesium only for training purposes, but now that I know all the great health benefits it has I will be using it indefinitely and on a daily basis. I also suffer from a me of the a symptoms if not in a severe way but I’m relieved to know how can reduce some of these ailments!
Hi George, I’m gratified to learn that Mg is proving to be of benefit to you. You are very wise to take Mg on a daily basis. It is the most vital element and without it we will become sick. If you have ME symptoms you will surely feel the difference. Research has suggested that auto immune conditions are exacerbated if not caused by a Mg deficiency. Ches
Overall website looks great. Very thoughfully put together and great balance of some personal info along with the differnet afflictions and causes. I had no idea animals could be used in this way.
You were talking about cataplexy and the person collapsing. When you say the dog protects the person, are you speaking that they actually would attack someone trying to harm the person their with?
I will be checking into how this could help my wife as well. She suffers from at times severe aniexty and some depression at times. My hope at some point is to remove her from as much of the medication as I can so she can deal with life in a more natural way. I also notice some of the medications she takes make her tired and effect her memory and I’m thinking that increased levels of Magnesium in her diet might help.
Thanks so much for the great articles. Wishing you all the best.
Thanks for reading the post Paul and your positive comments. I really think you and your wife particularly will benefit greatly from taking a good quality Mg supplement. By what your explained, she seems to have classic symptoms of a deficiency in this vital mineral. Please remember, the medical profession do not often deal in nutrients vitamins and minerals, they deal in pharmaceutical drugs. They are not educated in natural treatments. Looking at it logically, your body needs all its nutrients to function efficiently, it does not need an additonal problem of dealing with foreign substances that are not in the body naturally. Take a look at Magnesium Deficiency Symptoms. this will give you an idea of the plethora of conditions and illnesses symptomatic of Mg deficiency. Your wife’s life will change if she takes Mg. She will be calmer, her depression will wane, her anxiety will be a thing of the past. She will sleep better, her digestion will improve and she will be a new woman. This is exactly what happened to me. Good luck and good health to you both. PS, I’m not sure what the dog would do if anyone approached Emily while she was on the ground. If it was me I would probably not approach the dog, too risky! Ches
What an interesting article on magnesium. I really feel for those who are suffering, like Emily. Makes you feel thankful for good health. Ive been eating right and supplementing my diet with vitamins for years and do believe it pays off, health wise. Im so glad theres are cure for problems like you wrote about that can be addressed by natural means. Im not a believer in taking medication. Only if all else fails. Thank you for shedding some light on magnesiums health benefits.
Thank you for reading the article and your positive comments Scott. You seem to be doing great with your natural lifestyle. Yes, we must appreciate our good health and try to help others not so lucky. Just a quick note, please make sure you’re not overdoing the Calcium with your supplements. Good health to you and yours. Ches
I am so glad to see your site. I am an avid believer that Magnesium is super important and we are lacking in this mineral. I know it is mostly because over time, our soil has become depleted and therefore we are getting much less in our diets than we used to.
I am not surprised at all if magnesium is linked to narcolepsy.
thank you for this great information, and for getting it in front of people, as I believe so many people are uneducated on this.
Hi Rachel and thanks for your positive comments. It’s good to know the message is getting through albeit a little slowly, but we’ll get there! It is difficult to comprehend the plethora of diseases and conditions that are the direct result of magnesium deficiency including cardiovascular disease, the biggest killer in the world. Please spread the word. My aim is to have everyone replete in this vital mineral. The subsequent positive consequences for everyone’s health would be astronomical! Good health to you and yours. Che
Hi Chessie this is a lovely site and Learned a lot about Magnesium and it positive effect on health. Thank you for making this website because it really help my daughter who is studying to become a doctor to answer about on the most important element in the periodic table magnesium. Keep on doing what you her doing. your Site is very informative and creative and my daughter love it. It will help other along the way. thank you!!!
Hi Edna and thanks for the kind comments about the site. Your daughter will be one of the few that will be knowledgable in Magnesium. Nutrition with vitamins and minerals is not high on the agenda of the medical education curriculum. If she is training to be a medical doctor and also knows much about natural treatments, she will be one of the elite. Good luck to her and good health to both of you. Ches
Great information. It’s quite scary for people to have narcolepsy. You would suddenly just fall asleep without any warning. Imagine what would happen if that person was driving on the highway at high speeds.
Magnesium sounds very interesting as I have heard that it does a lot of things. It’s almost as powerful as CoQ10 which is almost like a do it all cure. I’m sure this will help more than people with narcolepsy.
Hi Blame and thanks for reading the post and your comments. Ches