Lifestyle

Woman with rare ‘Sleeping Beauty’ condition snoozes for months at a time

Alanna Wong, 30, slept the entire time and knew something was wrong when she went away for a weekend with cousins. On one occasion, the 30-year-old, from Southern California, snoozed for eight months straight, making her miss the whole of winter.

She went undiagnosed for eight years, but then in April 2007, Alanna's auntie told her her symptoms sounded like something her brother-in-law had experienced.

This was when Alanna discovered she had Kleine-Levin Syndrome – known as Sleeping Beauty Syndrome – a rare sleep disorder which causes a person to snooze for weeks, or even months, on end.

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KLS is believed to be caused to changes in the area of the brain which regulate sleep and living. Symptoms can occur as "episodes" and may be associated with flu-like signs.

Speaking to Sun Fabulous, Alanna said: "I was happy, healthy, active, my mind was sharp and I loved school. When I got home my mum came to the car to greet us.

"As I awoke from the car ride home, I said to her, 'Am I dreaming?' I didn't know the time, but this was a KLS episode. For the next few years, I'd have one to three-day long episodes pretty regularly, sometimes monthly, sometimes every three months."

Alanna told the publication how the condition had a huge impact on her life because she was unable to go to school and studying became difficult.

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The rare disorder, which can be unpredictable, was often triggered by alcohol and whenever Alanna came down with a cold or a lack of sleep.

On June 29, 2009, when Alanna was 20, she fell asleep and didn't wake up until February 11, 2010.

Now speaking out about the condition, she added: "I want to make sure others don't feel so alone and get diagnoses quicker.

"I'm also raising funds for research, and volunteering as a Board of Director (BOD) member for the KLS Foundation."

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She concluded: "I'm not with anyone at the moment but being in a healthy, stable and committed relationship is a goal of mine.

"In my heart I believe that I will meet someone but before I do, I would like to work on inner healing."

To learn more about Alanna's journey, check out her Instagram.

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