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Can't Sleep At The Same Time As My Husband Because Of DSPS

Yet again another night not sleeping. I feel very lonely every night awake and only discovered a few days ago about DSPS. I thought that was just some weird thing that my family have as everyone else I know seems to be able to sleep at night and wake in the morning.

I have felt depressed for years but now I think this has a lot to do with the loneliness from spending so much time alone and awake. I am constantly missing appointments with friends as I can not commit to early morning social events like having a coffee. At the minute I am not working as I work in a seasonal area and even though in theory I can sleep when I want. However, I want to be able to enjoy the same cycle as my husband. He goes to bed every night at 11.30PM and I spend the night awake and alone. I would love to know there is some help available but is it true that melatonin can make you infertile?? As I can never sleep at the same time as my husband this is having a serious effect on our relationship. Most times I sleep on the sofa as I hope the noise in the morning will wake me when he gets up so I can at least say good morning. Although it generally doesn't work.

Mary Irish but living in Spain

Kevin: Hello, I'm sorry to hear of your troubles, but hopefully you can conquer them soon. I hadn't heard of any relationship between melatonin and fertility until you mentioned it--and then a Google search quickly became very confusing. There were just about as many articles touting the ability of melatonin to cure infertility than articles warning of the dangers of it causing infertility. It's strange, and I wish I knew more. What I do know is that melatonin is a hormone that your body already creates naturally, so any affect on fertility would probably have to be the result of taking pretty high dosages of supplementary melatonin.

Regardless, there are other options you can pursue. Bright light therapy is regarded as the most effective means of shifting your circadian rhythms. To shift your circadian clock back, which would allow you to fall asleep earlier, you would need to expose yourself to bright enough light (at least 10,000 lux to have an affect) early in the morning. Fortunately, companies are starting to make products that help with this now. One example is the NatureBright SunTouch Light Therapy Lamp (the link goes to the product description on Amazon).

I hope that's useful! If you find some success in light therapy I would love to hear about it.


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Welcome! This site is continuously being created by students of Dr. William C. Dement's Sleep And Dreams course at Stanford University.

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