As a night owl myself, I've noticed how my moods are sometimes affected the later I stay up. Nights can be exciting moments of creativity or a depressing slog into the next day. I wanted to find out -- what can I do to be a happy night owl?
If our preferences for sleep and wake times are strongly influenced by genetics and biology, what are we to do when faced with inclinations that don't match up with the demands and responsibilities of our lives?
This case illustrates that sleep hygiene guidelines and non-specific treatment (general psychotherapy) are not typically effective in treating sleep disorders. Sometimes other sleep disorders such as a circadian rhythm disorder can masquerade as insomnia.
Are you a lark, someone who likes being up and active in the early morning? Or are you a night owl, someone who tends to wake later and perhaps gains energy and focus as the day progresses, someone who likes to work (and play) in the evening hours?
People with delayed sleep phase feel sleepy much later in the night and need to sleep in to get sufficient sleep. As a result, they often suffer the effects of chronic lack of sleep, since most people have commitmernts to fulfill -- such as being in school or at work -- in the morning.
Our biological clocks are stubborn creatures -- they don't like change. Because of our busy schedules and our constant exposure to light, our body clocks are often caught in a vicious, out-of-sync cycle.