When your Sleep Clock is Broken


N-24 Awareness Day –

November 24

by Madelyn Griffith-Haynie, CTP, CMC, ACT, MCC, SCAC

Because I was not able to make it home in time to make sure this article posted automatically before November 24, 2014, primarily due to the ramifications of my own sleep disorder, it didn’t (groan!)

No matter, really, because the information remains relevant, if not exactly “timely,” posting one day following the official N-24 Awareness Day.

ABOUT Chronorhythm Disorders

As I said in the 2013 article about N-24 Awareness Day, chronorhythm disorders – the various disorders of sleep timing – have long been the unloved step-child of sleep medicine.

ALL OVER THE WEB, and in the sleep disorder literature itself, you will read that “the most common sleep disorders include insomnia, sleep apnea, restless legs syndrome, and narcolepsy.

That information is only partially correct.

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November 24 is N-24 Awareness Day



A SHOT at Fixing Broken Sleep Clocks

by Madelyn Griffith-Haynie, CTP, CMC, ACT, MCC, SCAC
Another article in the Sleep Series

Nov24~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
“Too many people don’t care what happens

so long as it doesn’t happen to them.”
~ William Howard Taft

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Your chance to step up and make a difference

We have known for DECADES that as many as three quartersof those of us here in “Alphabet City ~ 75% ~ have chronic problems with sleep and sleep timing.

Many of us have trouble falling asleep almost every night — until and unless we are, literally, exhausted.

Some of us continue to have trouble letting go of the day even then.

Almost all of us, EVEN when we are well rested, struggle to come to alertness when we awaken, regardless of what time of day that might be — frequently for well over an hour or more after first opening our eyes.

Our eyes may be open, but our brains are still half-asleep
— almost every single “morning” of our lives —

Were you aware that, for longer than the Baby-Boomer generation has been ALIVE, there has been only asmall pocket of concerned individuals — dismissed as mavericks, complainers, enablers, alarmists, incalcitrant slug-a-beds, fringe-scientists — who have been interested enough in the quality of the LIVES of those who were so affected to lobby for efforts to understand why?

As I wrote in materials for the world’s first ADD-specific coach trainingback in 1994, almost 20 years ago now with numbers like 75%, if this were heart disease (or any other population), I’ll bet you that MOST of the scientific and medical community would have been ON it!

By supporting the recently formed non-profit, Circadian Sleep Disorders Network, together we can finally CHANGE that sad reality.

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What IS Time?


FlameChallengeTimeThe Concept of TIME

by Madelyn Griffith-Haynie, CTP, CMC, ACT, MCC, SCAC
2013 World Science Festival’s Flame Challenge Video

“As far as we can tell, time is a subjective experience, 
and timekeeping was just invented
to keep people from missing trains.”
~ Jonathan Strickland

ADDers everywhere are dancing in the streets! 

It turns out that we have been right about time all along – it doesn’t really exist.
Universal Time, Standard Time, clock synchronization – it’s ALL an illusion!

No wonder we’ve always had such a tough time with with the concept.

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Non-Profit Supporting Fractured Sleep Clocks


Chronorhythm Sleep Disorders are SERIOUSLY understudied – overlooked
PLEASE help spread the word about CSDN — reblog, link, talk about it on chatlists ~ thanks!

Stepping into the Void:
The Circadian Sleep Disorders Network

by Madelyn Griffith-Haynie, CTP, CMC, ACT, MCC, SCAC
Another article in the Sleep Series

Broken ClockBroken Sleep Clocks

As many as three quarters — 75% — of those of us here in “Alphabet City” have chronic problems with sleep and sleep timing.

Most of us have trouble falling asleep at night unless we are, literally, exhausted. For some of us, not even then. Almost all of us struggle to come to alertness when we awaken.

Are you aware that, until now, there has been
no concerted effort to understand WHY?

Chronorhythm disorders – the disorders of sleep timing – have long been the unloved step-child of sleep medicine.

A relatively new Non-Profit organization, the
Circadian Sleep Disorders Network
has been formed to change that sad reality.

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HIGH Interest Charges on Sleep Debt


You don’t wanna’ have to pay
the interest on Sleep Debt!

by Madelyn Griffith-Haynie, CTP, CMC, ACT, MCC, SCAC
Another article in the Sleep Series

According to the authors of the website Talk About Sleep:

BigYawn“At least 40 million Americans suffer from chronic, long-term sleep disorders each year, and an additional 20 million experience occasional sleeping problems.

These disorders and the resulting sleep deprivation interfere with work, driving, and social activities.

They also account for an estimated $16 BILLION in medical costs each year, while the indirect costs due to lost productivity and other factors are probably much greater.”

They go on to say that “the most common sleep disorders include insomnia, sleep apnea, restless legs syndrome, and narcolepsy,” which is an indication of how LITTLE research has been done on chronorhythm disorders.

But you don’t have to have a diagnostic sleep disorder of any kind to experience the negative effects of sleep debt. In fact, most of us in industrialized society are chronically under-slept, which means that most of us have racked up sleep debt to a significant degree.

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Sleep Timing Disorders & More Laws of Photobiology


More Laws of Photobiology

by Madelyn Griffith-Haynie, CTP, CMC, ACT, MCC, SCAC
Part III of a three-part article in the Sleep Series
Click HERE for Part II

pdclipart.orgLET’S REVIEW what we learned in Parts I and II:

• Time cues are what keep our body clocks aligned with the rest of our 24 hour world.

• In order for our sleep-wake timing to cooperate with our planet’s day/night cycle, our biological clock seems to need regular environmental time cues — like sunrise, sunset, and/or a stable sleep-wake routine.

• The successful shifting of “native” circadian rhythms to those that coordinate with earth’s 24 hour day is calledentrainment.”

• One of the most important reasons for regulating our sleep schedule is to stabilize the quality of LIGHT to which we are exposed.

• In order for work-arounds (and treatment protocols) for circadian/chronorhythm dysfunctions to be successful, it is helpful to understand and cooperate with what are sometimes referred to as the basic laws of photobiology.

Photobiology is the scientific study of the interactions of light (technically, non-ionizing radiation) and living organisms.” ~ Wikipedia

• Visible Light Regulates — The therapeutic effects of light depends upon the wavelength transmitted to the brain through the eye’s retina — visible light is the primary regulator of the human circadian response.

• Only light that is absorbed will have an effect — and it matters what kind of light is absorbed when.

Visible light is absorbed through through chromophores in the retina.

It “communicates” with the body through two primary pathways to the brain from the retina to the optic nerve: one that governs visual perception and response, and the other that governs “neuro-behavioral” responses, along with hormonal and circadian functions.

WE LEFT OFF WITH THE FOLLOWING STATEMENT:

• Circadian entrainment is most sensitive to stimulation from light in the blue spectrum, but until 1998, Science had no idea how that happened.

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Sleep Timing Disorders and LIGHT


Obeying the Laws of Photobiology

by Madelyn Griffith-Haynie, CTP, CMC, ACT, MCC, SCAC
Part II of a three-part article in the Sleep Series
Click HERE for Part I

Diagram illustrating the influence of dark-light rhythms on circadian rhythms and related physiology and behavior. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The influence of dark-light rhythms on circadian cycles, and related physiology and behavior. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Keep in mind:

Time cues are what keep our body clocks aligned with the rest of our 24 hour world.

In order for our sleep-wake timing to cooperate with our planet’s day/night cycle, our biological clock seems to need regular environmental time cues — like sunrise, sunset, and/or a stable sleep-wake routine.

The successful shifting of “native” circadian rhythms to those that coordinate with earth’s 24 hour day is calledentrainment.”

Although light is not the only factor acting on our circadian rhythms, many researchers consider it to be the strongest cue for entrainment. Its entrainment effectiveness, however, can be altered by a number of other factors.

  • Regular exercise, for example, when coupled with appropriately timed light exposure, results in a slightly stronger entrainment response.
  • Certain music and supplemental Melatonin (taken at the right time) have also demonstrated a positive effect on entrainment.
  • Stress, on the other hand, weakens the entrainment effect, as do some medications, nicotine, alcohol (or sudden withdrawal from either)

In the rest of this article, we’ll focus primarily on the mechanisms of light entrainment.

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Owls, Larks and Camels


Normal cuts a Wide Swath

by Madelyn Griffith-Haynie, CTP, CMC, ACT, MCC, SCAC
Another article in the Sleep Series

“Early to bed, early to rise,
makes a man stupid and blind in the eyes”

~ Mazer Rackham (from Orson Scott Card‘s book “Ender’s game“)

 

NiteOwlandMoon

Normal Circadian Rhythms

Among people with healthy circadian clocks, there are “Larks” or “morning people” who prefer to sleep and wake early, and there are “Owls” who prefer to go to sleep later each night and awaken much later each day.

But whether they are larks or owls, people with normal circadian systems:

  • can awaken in time for what they need to do in the morning, and fall asleep at night at a time that allows them to get enough sleep before they have to get up.
  • can sleep and wake up at the same time every day, if they want to.
  • will, within a few days of starting a new routine that requires their getting up earlier than usual, start to fall asleep at night earlier.

For example, someone used to sleeping at 1 a.m. and waking up at 9 a.m. begins a new job on a Monday, and must get up at 6 a.m. to get ready for work.

By the following Friday, the person has begun to fall asleep at around 10 p.m., and can wake up at 6 a.m. feeling well-rested.

This adaptation to earlier sleep/wake times is known as ‘advancing the sleep phase.’ Healthy people can advance their sleep phase by about one hour each day.

24 hours a day isn’t “normal”

Researchers have placed volunteers in caves or special apartments for several weeks without clocks or other time cues. Without those time cues, the volunteers tended to go to bed up to an hour later and to get up about an hour later each day.

These experiments demonstrated that the “free-running” circadian rhythm in humans is greater than the earth’s 24 hour cycle – anywhere from 24:15 to 25 or so a day].

To maintain a 24 hour day/night cycle, the biological clock needs regular environmental time cues, for example sunrise, sunset, and daily routine.

Time cues are what keep our body clocks aligned with the rest of the world.

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Sleep Basics affecting Sleep TIMING


Sleep is a many splendored thing

by Madelyn Griffith-Haynie, CTP, CMC, ACT, MCC, SCAC
Part I of a three-part article in the Sleep Series

Courtesy of artist-educator Phillip Martin

Courtesy of artist-educator Phillip Martin

For most of the history of mankind, human beings divided life itself into two parts  — awake and asleep.

Other than cultures who were into dream interpretation in a big way, most people didn’t think much about sleep beyond that idea.

Most of us still don’t think about it much, unless we are forced to do so because we are having trouble sleeping or trouble staying awake.

Early to Bed, Early to Rise

Until the widespread availability of the electric light bulb, only beginning to come to public awareness around the dawn of the 20th century, most humans set their sleep-wake schedules in reaction to the availability of light, truly believing that they had made a pragmatic decision.

Oh sure, way back in the day somebody had to stay awake to protect the sleeping tribe, and many warring tribes chose to attack under cover of darkness, but there wasn’t a whole lot that the others could DO once darkness descended.

So they went to bed.

If they thought about it at all, most people probably believed they fell asleep quickly because they were exhausted from the demands of life in the primarily agrarian lifestyle of most of the human race for centuries. Little did they suspect that the reason sleep came so easily was a factor of what we call “entrainment to the light/dark cycle,” aided by the structure of their regular schedules.

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Related Content: Sleep Struggles and Disorders


Off-Site ADD Comorbid SLEEP Links
ongoing updates – check back for more

compiled by Madelyn Griffith-Haynie, CTP, CMC, ACT, MCC, SCAC
Last update: November 4, 2013 -3:41 pm Eastern

LONG list of links (by category) to posts about sleep and sleep disorders
Articles to help keep you busy
between MY posts!

Below is my ongoing attempt (since February, 2011) to organize some links to “related content” to help navigate to articles RELATED to what a reader may be interested in reading – in this case, sleep and sleep disorders.

There’s this wonderful Zemanta application that suggests a few of these guys whenever I write a post for ADDandSoMuchMore.com. As time permits, I will continue to collect them and move them here, categorizing them by title when I have the odd moment to do so. (No guarantees about the quality of the content, however.)

I will eventually get around to reading them all, and will remove ones I don’t agree with or don’t find relevant, or sufficiently info-dense (hey! my list, my mindset!)

  • The ones I think are really cool, I pepper around in the posts they “relate” to, and they may no longer appear here as a result. (So if your link’s no longer here, it doesn’t mean you flunked or anything!!)
  • There are ALSO links to content I run into as I browse the web, as well as content from some of the blue-bazillian lists I subscribe to.
  • Finally, there is content I search for directly as I write, endeavoring to keep the articles here as current as I am able, given time constraints and my need to keep a roof over my head.

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My Wrinkle in Time: HOW does time fly?


What Makes Time Fly?

by Madelyn Griffith-Haynie, CTP, CMC, ACT, MCC, SCAC
a light-hearted introduction to So-Much-More about Time


For over a quarter of a century now, I have been fascinated with anything related to the topic of the awareness of the passage of time.

My secret fascination with the mechanics of time’s awareness began long before I first learned that I seem to be one who was born without that internal tic-tic-tock with which most people DO seem to have been equipped, part of the standard package.

I’ve been told I can’t get one now, even as an after-market upgrade.

I first began to wonder how anybody managed to
keep track of time when I was a very young child.

  • I had no idea there was such a thing as an inner
    time-sense until I was diagnosed with ADD.
  • I was 38 years old.

From the moment my mother first read me the story of Alice in Wonderland, I felt more of a kinship to the “I’m late, I’m late, I’m late!” White Rabbit than to Alice.  

I can’t recall a time before my mid-twenties when somebody wasn’t rushing me along for one reason or another.

Don’t get me wrong

I was a bright kid. I had no problem understanding the concept of the passage of time. I also noted without confusion that the grownups danced to the cadence of that passage.

Schedules had to be regular and recurring or feathers would fly.

  • Particular foods (like eggs and oatmeal) had to be eaten every morning, shortly after being awakened.
  • Spaghetti and chicken foods were always eaten at night, but never too close to bedtime.
  • And that green salad rule: no green salad early in the day.

That was predictable.  I figured it out all by myself before I was even in school.

After all, food-timing rules were important enough that the grown-ups invented a bunch of code-words for groups of foods that hung out together at certain times, so that everybody could cite the darned things: breakfast, lunch, dinner and snack.

Through my parent’s friends I learned of still more, like supper — and brunch!

Like I said, I was a bright kid.

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JetLagged for Life


Please – take time to read the comments.  We are NOT alone!

(c) Madelyn Griffith-Haynie, CTP, CMC, ACT, MCC, SCAC
Part 1 of the  Sleep Struggles Series – all rights reserved

Living with Jet Lag

A first person account of an ADDer with an atypical
sleep disorder — me.

This Series is excerpted from a book I am writing about disordered sleep architecture.  The content in a chapter of the section on some of the lesser known sleep disorders was written from personal experience, hoping to “put a face” on chronorhythm disorders, – disorders of sleep timing.  

I hope that looking at life and living through the experience of a “coulda’ been a REAL contender” sufferer would describe things better than a list of symptoms and probable causes ever could. ~ mgh

As I explained in the introductory article to the sleep disorders content on ADDandSoMuchMore.com (ABOUT ADD & Sleep Struggles), 75% of us here in ADD/EFD-land have sleep struggles, if not diagnostic sleep disorders.

I am one of them.  Here’s why what I have to say on the topic might interest YOU.

I am also an ADD Coach and trainer, one of the life coaching field’s earliest pioneers, founder of the first coaching school with an ADD-specific training curriculum, and creator of many key terms and techniques used in the ADD Coaching field today.

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