Phase Delay

If you do your best work at night, have trouble going to bed early, and struggle in the morning, you may have a medical disorder- phase delay syndrome.

Phase delay syndrome essentially means that your phase- the relationship of your body’s sleep-wake cycle to the 24 hour day- is delayed relative to those of others; you naturally go to bed later and awaken later.  Phase delay only becomes a “syndrome” when people need to go to school or work early and suffer because their bodies cannot acclimate to an early-to-bed, early-to-rise schedule.

There is very good data that teenagers- who need to awaken early for school- are naturally very delayed, while the elderly tend to be less delayed.

There are probably tens of millions of people in the US alone who have some degree of phase delay syndrome, but very few seek medical advice.  Why?  Our society sees those who struggle to awaken in the morning as lazy. We do not conceive that such people may have a fundamentally different circadian system and benefit from medical consultation.

Can you make yourself