Possible KLS Triggers

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Possible KLS Triggers

Each Kleine-Levin Syndrome (KLS) patient may have their own set of factors which trigger an episode. It is common, however, for a trigger to be something which puts the body under additional stress or alters normal functioning.

Possible KLS triggers could include:

  • Alcohol
  • Anesthetics
  • Colds
  • Dehydration
  • Excess Stress
  • Flu
  • Infection
  • Injuries
  • Intense Physical Activities
  • Jet Lag
  • Lack of Sleep
  • Sunburns

Alcohol is a major KLS trigger for me. It was so hard to make it through the undiagnosed years. I found myself associating with people that I normally would not have hung out with if I was in my right state of mind or if I was protected.

During high school, I occasionally went to parties. I remember one particular party during the Christmas season. I wasn’t feeling well, but I so badly wanted to go out. I left the house at 9:00pm. I remember having a couple sips of alcohol. I began to feel extremely dreamy and felt very frightened, but it did not stop me from lying on the middle of the floor. I couldn’t remember how I got home. Twelve days passed as I slept 20 hours per day. The other four hours I was in an extremely deep altered state of consciousness.

When I woke up from the episode, I went back to school not even realizing I had been at a party. Friends came up to me telling me I was crazy and that they didn’t want to be my friend anymore. People told me things that happened at the party. Bits and pieces of that night came back to me in flashback form. Memories I thought had been a dream. I remember wanting to know what was wrong with me and begging God to give me an answer.

A version of what happened told by my sister’s best friend at the time was that I was very drunk and out of it (It was just KLS-as I was not drunk). I was lying on the bathroom floor not making sense of my words, confused, and angry. She said that my two friends wanted to carry me into a bedroom and leave me there. Luckily, my sister’s friend called my sister and asked what she should do, and my sister said to take me home. She and two guys carried me to the car and took me home.

This is just one example of why it’s crucial to have a proper diagnosis. Since my diagnosis, I have been able to surround myself with true friends and a very protective family that understands my illness. I now know to never drink alcohol as it has more than once put me into an episode.

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