Teenagers

Blue light and Body Clock Problems

Does your body clock feel as though it isn’t running at 24hours? Are you sleeping too early, too late, or all over the place? Then perhaps you have a Circadian Rhythm Disturbance (CRD) and blue light therapy may be able to help you.

Your body clock (Circadian Rhythm) runs at slightly longer than 24hours, but most of us can realign our body clock if needed, with the help of external cues called zeitgebers. When your central body clock generator malfunctions, or those external cues do not help as well as they should, then you could develop a Circadian Rhythm Disturbance (CRD).

The commonest CRD is Delayed Sleep Phase and is commonly seen in the young. Free Running Rhythm (now known as Non-24-Hour Sleep Wake Rhythm) and Advanced Sleep Phase can also disrupt your sleep.

If you can’t control your sleep-time, or wake-time, you’ll arise unrefreshed and subsequently become tired, sleepy, and performing at school or work will be difficult.

The typical adolescent with a CRD will be difficult to rouse in the morning, sleeps in often, falls asleep at school, under-performs during testing, and won’t go to sleep at an appropriate time.

Realigning your body clock is easy, and includes the use of sleep timing methods, blue light therapy, and Melatonin. This re-entrainment program should only be performed after exclusion of other sleep disorders, and under the direction of a Specialist in this field. A home sleep study or use of a CPAP machine won’t be able to address Circadian Rhythm problems.

If you think that your Circadian Rhythm isn’t what it should be, call us for a consultation.

© APSS 2015

Fixing Sleep in teenagers and adolescents

Sleep problems exist at every age group, and that’s why we’re delighted to remind everyone that we not only consult adults, but also adolescents above the age of 14years. The sleep needs of your Teenager should be as tailored to them as it would to any Adult. Sleep in Teenagers is unique.

Adolescents aren’t just ‘little adults’. Their problems are specific in their age group, and are well and truly above and beyond a simple ‘sleep apnoea’ test. They shouldn’t be treated just like any other adult.

In the younger age group, there is a higher propensity for Central Hypersomnias (including Narcolepsy and Idiopathic Hypersomnolence). They’re more likely to experience NREM parasomnias, sleep walking and sleep talking, night terrors and arousal disorders. Their Circadian Rhythm is more likely to be reflective of Delayed Sleep Phase Syndrome, or Free Running Rhythm (now known as Non-24-Hour Sleep-Wake Rhythm).

Increasingly we’re seeing more and more of those with Periodic Limb Movements or The Restless Legs Syndrome too.

Home sleep studies are restricted to those above 18yo, and often have no consultation with any specialist of any kind. That’s why we prefer in-hospital studies, and our specialists will always personally see you with the results.

We’re accredited to see more than just adults, and we routinely perform Sleep Studies on those under the age of 18.

If you want your Sleep needs taken seriously, no matter what age you are, give us a call and we’ll put you in contact with our Adelaide Sleep Specialist.

© APSS 2014