A former driving instructor who suffers with extreme sleepwalking has had to sleep in her living room for two years - so she doesn't fall down the stairs.

Angela Caulfield, 53, from Barrow, has suffered with extreme sleepwalking for most of her adult life.

She has still yet to fully recover from a sleepwalking incident in March 2022 in which she fractured her hip and fractured her fibula (leg bone).

Her condition, diagnosed officially as Non rapid eye movement (NREM) parasomnia, has seen her make dinner, walk up and down a plane aisle, and even drink kitchen cleaner - all while sleepwalking.

She's even ordered £1,400 worth of plants from an online shop while fast asleep.


Angela Caulfield often goes downstairs while sleepwalking

Angela Caulfield often goes downstairs while sleepwalking

It has led to numerous injuries, including a broken hip, seven fractured ribs, two fractures in her spine, three fractures in her pelvis, and a shattered wrist.

This, along with other health problems including Type 1 diabetes, an underactive thyroid, and osteoarthritis, have left her "totally debilitated."

Angela said: "It's such a strange condition to have but it has caused me lots of issues - I think it's time to wear a body cam and actually see what I get up to."

One of her most dramatic incidents occurred in March 2022 when she caught herself falling to the kitchen floor at 2am.

She added: "My brother was staying with me, so he helped me.

"I reached out to the pan cupboard and was knocking the hell out of the pans.

"Paramedics had to put me on a big board and I was in Furness General Hospital for three weeks."

It turned out Angela had fractured her hip and fractured her fibula.


Angela Caulfield suffers with extreme sleepwalking

Angela Caulfield suffers with extreme sleepwalking

Angela even suspects she might have jumped off the top of the stairs as a few years ago after finding coffee stains on wallpaper by the stairs which weren't there before.

"I live on my own, both my kids have grown up," she said.

"Now, I sleep downstairs to avoid falling, but I still have accidents."

Angela used be to be a driving instructor but two particularly nasty bouts of Covid have left her with extreme fatigue and she has had to give up working.

She once even sleepwalked while on a flight.

"All I remember is coming to in the aisle suddenly," she said.

"I was even told later the cabin crew were considering doing an emergency landing as they didn't know what was wrong with me and the seatbelt lights were on."

In a separate incident she awoke to find her house trashed and was midway through making a Pot Noodle.


Hob guards are often take off of the cooker

Hob guards are often take off of the cooker

Angela said: "I'll often wake up to find I've moved the hobs guards of the cooker and all the cupboards will be empty.

"About ten years ago I woke up in a hotel lift and another time I woke up as I was at a vending machine.

"I also woke up drinking a kitchen cleaner out of the bottle.

"I was taken to A&E, but luckily I hadn't really swallowed any of it so I was fine."

Angela says her health took a turn for the worse after contracting Covid twice in 2020 while she says her mobility is "shot" of the back off her various accidents.

The fatigue and mobility issues had made daily life challenging and she struggles with basic tasks such as walking up the stairs.

Prior to Covid Angela was a driving instructor for 15 years but the long-term effects of the virus, combined with her sleepwalking-related injuries, forced her to give up her career.


Mess that Angela Caulfield has caused

Mess that Angela Caulfield has caused

"It's hard as I wanted to get back to work, but I couldn't hold down a full-time job now,"

She has been forced into an early retirement, a situation she finds difficult after years of steady employment.

"I hate it. I've always worked," Angela said.

Though her condition is debilitating, Angela says she uses humour to cope with her bizarre condition.

"You have to see the funny side," she said.

"I once ordered £1400 of outdoor plants - the delivery man was looking for a garden centre for goodness sake!"