A sleepwalking mum has revealed how she woke up in the middle of the night to find herself downing a bottle of bleach as though it was juice.
Andrea Davison, 41, regularly sleepwalks, with her worst episodes happening when she watched her dad and father-in law battle cancer.
Her sleepwalking became gradually more extreme until she woke up one night ‘gulping down bleach’, leading medical staff to fear she was attempting suicide.
Andrea, from Leigh-on-Sea, Essex, said she feared for her life when she woke up and realised what had happened, saying: ‘I thought I was going to die. I thought I’d killed myself and that was it.’
The mum-of-four described how the incident happened the same night her dad had been taken into hospital with heart failure.
That night, I woke up drinking bleach. It had burned all my throat… I must have thought it was something to drink. I was holding the bleach bottle in one hand and a ginger nut biscuit in the other.
I have no idea how much of that I’d drank, but I woke up gulping it down like it was juice. I tried to make myself sick then phoned an ambulance. The paramedics could smell it on my breath.
The paramedics believed Andrea had drank the bleach on purpose in an attempt to kill herself, but the charity founder remained adamant that she’d been asleep the entire time.
Because my dad was dying, people thought I wasn’t coping. It was a very bizarre place to be when I wasn’t suicidal. The hospital gave me something to empty my stomach and I was violently sick.
The mother spent the night in Southend Hospital but was released the next day, thankfully making a full recovery.
Andrea suffers with parasomnia, which refers to out of the ordinary things people do while asleep and can include sleepwalking, sleep paralysis, sleep aggression and even sleep sex.
Andrea regularly wakes up in bizarre places, and has occasionally come around to find herself stood in the middle of the garden in her pyjamas. She also sleep eats, often waking up to find leftover food she had devoured in her sleep.
Not only that, but the 41-year-old now has to hide her car keys at night after once discovering she had driven to her mum’s house and back while asleep behind the wheel.
The charity founder is now speaking out about her late-night antics in a bid to shine a light on how dangerous sleepwalking really is.
She says she is always ‘shaken up’ when she realises her sleepwalking has put her life in danger, with her partner now being on guard all the time in case she gets in trouble.
Now if Andrea starts sleepwalking, he will walk her back to bed to prevent anything bad happening to her.
If you have a story you want to tell send it to UNILAD via [email protected]
A Broadcast Journalism Masters graduate who went on to achieve an NCTJ level 3 Diploma in Journalism, Lucy has done stints at ITV, BBC Inside Out and Key 103. While working as a journalist for UNILAD, Lucy has reported on breaking news stories while also writing features about mental health, cervical screening awareness, and Little Mix (who she is unapologetically obsessed with).