Non-24-hour Sleep Wake Disorder Associations with Depression

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treatment, changes in sleep-focused psychiatric intervention are considered crucial for stabilizing mood and behavior. Both patients and their doctors should pay close attention to the stepwise patterns of co-morbid psychiatric disorders and Non-24 for early intervention.

Non 24-Hour Sleep Wake Disorder and Depression

Non 24-Hour Sleep Wake Disorder (Non-24) is often misdiagnosed as  depression because symptoms of sleep deprivation often overlap with those of depression.

Common Symptoms of Depression Common Symptoms of Non-24
Feelings of hopelessness
Insomnia Insomnia
Daytime sleepiness Daytime sleepiness
Fatigue Fatigue
Difficulty concentrating Difficulty concentrating
Irritability Irritability

People with Non-24 may feel misunderstood by their friends, co-workers, family members, and even their doctors because they do not understand why people with Non-24 cannot just re-program their body clocks to sleep on a normal schedule. People with Non-24 may also find it difficult, or even impossible, to maintain employment, keep appointments, care for their children, and maintain a social life. Things that require attention for long periods of time, such as watching a movie, going to a play or a sporting event, or sitting through a child’s concert, may also be difficult. These restrictions in day-to-day activities can contribute to feelings of depression. For people who are already suffering from depression, these impairments in daytime alertness and nighttime sleep can make their depression worse.

It’s important that people with Non-24 who also suffer from depression seek treatment. If left untreated, both sleep deprivation and depression can increase a person’s risk for chronic health problems, such as  heart disease .

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