Chapter

Sleep changes in seasonal affective disorder

Philip Saleh, Jianhua Shen and Colin M. Shapiro

in Seasonal Affective Disorder

Second edition

Published on behalf of Oxford University Press

Published in print October 2009 | ISBN: 9780199544288
Published online February 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780191754593 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/med/9780199544288.003.0011
Sleep changes in seasonal affective disorder

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The evident connection to circadian abnormality implies that both sleep and circadian rhythms play an important role in both the pathophysiology and symptoms of SAD. However, it remains to be seen whether there exists a particular set of sleep markers that can be specifically associated with the disorder. In this regard, preliminary studies using EEG power spectral analysis of depressed patients suggest that this type of finely graded measurement may be more useful for identifying depressive symptom patterns than the 30-second epochs of standard sleep architecture. Further investigation into sleep and SAD is necessary to determine which sleep parameters are truly associated with mood change and the source of broad inconsistencies across studies. With respect to treatment, both pharmaceutical and non-pharmaceutical approaches have in several cases been promoted with both improvements in sleep and reductions in depressive symptoms, although sleep changes do not appear to be required for mood to normalize. Treatments targeted at sleep and circadian rhythms, which may also improve mood in SAD, represent a promising area of future research.

Chapter.  7485 words. 

Subjects: Psychiatry

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