Nightmares - Side effect or symptom (new to the forum)

Hi there, I am new to the forum and looking for some help/advice and/or other peoples experiences with bad dreams and nightmares. My mum was diagnosed with Parkinson’s last year and was initially prescribed 50m/12.5mg Madopar and then earlier this year this was upped to 100mg/25mg.
She has recently been suffering from some very bad dreams/re-occurring nightmares which she struggles to wake up from and differentiate between what is real and what is the dream.
Is it possible that this is a side effect from the Madopar or is it more of a symptom of Parkinson’s itself?
She is getting to the stage where she doesn’t want to go to sleep as she worries about dreaming/waking and I know how important rest is for her.
I am currently trying to arrange an appointment with our local Parkinson’s adviser (her nurse wasn’t the most helpful last time we saw her and we aren’t due to see her consultant again until September) to see if they can offer some advice but just wondering if this is something others suffer with.
Many Thanks

My husband was diagnosed with Parkinsons 2 years ago and he has what they call Night Terrors he has been prescribed a tablet for these which has helped a lot, speak with ur gp

Before my husband was diagnosed his consultant kept asking us, particularly me, if he thrashed out in his sleep due to bad dreams. I understand this is a symptom of PD.
We haven’t had the thrashing out but my husband did describe a vivid disturbing recurring dream. Fortunately the medication he is on allows him to have dream free nights now.

I also understand it to be one of the possible ‘symptoms’ of PD. I certainly have had nightmares, but they decreased noticeably since I was diagnosed 2 years ago and put on Madopar (100 * 25mg x 4). However I am also led to believe that too high a dose of Madopar could cause nightmares and / or hallucinations. It seems the question to ask is has the change of dose made it worse?
Seems PD has so many possible symptoms, sometimes you never know which is PD related and which isn’t.
That makes it handy as an excuse sometimes for any eccentric behavior :grinning

My mum who has PD had the same challenges. We believe it is the side effect of the medication. This having it carefully titrated by your doctor for the evening dose is important. She is now on the slow release sinemet and it is ok now. Sleep is important and to be rested well helps with the mental state.

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Thanks everyone, we have spoken to her Nurse who has suggested that she slowly reduces the dose back to the original and have also tried to schedule an appointment with her consultant once he is back from holiday - however things do seem to be getting more and more confused for her now in the sense that she seems to be muddling up her current life with her childhood when we initially saw her consultant her did think it could be parkinsons plus some form of Vascular Dementia which I think possibly she is showing some signs of.
Hopefully we can see him once he gets back from holiday - we saw a GP yesterday who ruled out any sort of urine infection or stroke/tia but didn’t really know what to suggest.

Hi @LTM,

Glad to see you’ve been welcomed by the community and received some great advice. In regards to your mum possibly having Vascular Dementia, unfortunately, this is not uncommon for people with Parkinson’s and if you’d like to learn more about this, you can find more information on this here - Hopefully you can get more clarity on this when you meet with your mum’s consultant.

I can see that you’ve received a lot of helpful advice about the nightmares that your mum has been experiencing, we also have information on our website about sleep issues which you may also find useful here -

Do keep us posted on this and feel free to use the forum for support as frequently as you need. :slightly_smiling_face:

Best wishes,
Forum Community Manager