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DSPS: Genetically Inherited?

by Krishna

As far back as I can remember, and even further back than that (according to my mother), I have had what seems to be DSPS. As a toddler and small child, my parents would put me to bed and I'd lie there for hours without falling asleep. I used to try to get my older sister to talk to me during those times but, since she "wouldn't" answer, I assumed we'd get in trouble for talking after bedtime. I thought it was a strange routine (going to bed well before sleepiness had set in, lying there in quiet darkness) but as a kid, who was I to argue with it?

It was years before I discovered that my sister had never answered me because, like a normal person, she was asleep. When grammar school began, my mother knew that I was terribly difficult to wake in the mornings but thought I was being unruly, not sleep deprived. It wasn't until I was about 10 years old and talked with my dad that I began to figure out that my sleep pattern wasn't normal.

He had been this way his whole life (a night owl, sleepy in the morning, hard to wake before noon). He declared that I must have gotten it from him. In my adulthood, my behaviors have certainly contributed to the issue, I enjoy the energy I have at night and find myself most productive after 11pm. In fact, the only time in my life I have felt rested and
alert regularly was during a 2-year stint when I worked a grave shift job with a 9pm-7am schedule. It was like I had finally found out what it was like for all those "morning people".

I'm curious to know if this is only a "disorder" or if this can be an inherited issue. I'd like to "fix" it but, to be perfectly honest, if it weren't for the expectations of the rest of the world, I'd love this schedule.

Kevin: Hey Krishna, thanks a bunch for sharing your experiences and insight here. It's really interesting to get your childhood self's perspective on your delayed sleep phase. What, you mean this isn't normal??

I don't know too much myself whether circadian disorders have genetic components. I'd imagine they would, although I don't know whether or not anyone has found specific evidence for it. I'll turn this one over to our global Internet audience while I search for any answers I can find. Does anyone know anything more on this?

And I can relate to your enjoyment of the delayed phase despite it being outside the social norm. If it's what keeps you functioning optimally, hey, sometimes you shouldn't have to conform to the world. I'd imagine many a genius breakthrough was made in the wee hours of the night by someone working alertly due to a delayed sleep phase. Having one is certainly not inherently bad. It's the schedule that turns it into a menacing sleep deprivation feeder.

All the best to you,

Comments for DSPS: Genetically Inherited?

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Jun 04, 2012
My DSPS Appears Genetic NEW
by: Anonymous

Hi All. My grandmother was always tired and thought herself an insomniac although she always seemed able to sleep in. She had three children and five grandchildren. One of her children and FOUR of her grandchildren clearly have DSPS. Within the last week I have slept variously betwen 6am-noon and 11am-7pm! At a reported 0.13% incidence, it's either genetic or I've got a very unlucky family. Keep the faith and don't let the morning people, with their bronze-age farmer's bodyclocks, get you down. Electric light is wasted on them. Matt 48 UK

Jan 05, 2013
i may have gotten it from my dad too NEW
by: insomnigirl

Hi there! My dad has troubles sleeping like I do, but it may be because of his job. He tries to have a constant sleep schedule all week, but it's just not natural to him. He would rather stay up late like me, and he usually talks my mom's ear off for a good 2 hours before he at least tries to sleep!
I have had troubles sleeping ever since i can remember, and it is strange just laying there for hours until you just get tired
. I swear i have DSPS, but i can actually function decently with 5 hours of sleep (no less though) and its my average amount of sleep on a school day. I take melatonin sometimes, but it can make me even more drowsy in the morning ._.
I believe my dad and I both have the same REM things, (Rapid Eye Movement) responsible for your dreams and whether u sleep heavier ealier or later. We both sleep heavier later because i can either get 5 hours of sleep or more than 8 hours >.> other than that we have such a hard time waking up. If you sleep heavier when it's time to get up, you have a harder time waking up than normal.
Hope this helped!

Jan 06, 2013
Interesting NEW
by: Krishna

If sleeping a standard schedule (or trying to) I found that I function best on less than 5 hours sleep or more than 10. If I'm on my "natural" sleep cycle, 8 or 9 is perfect. Perhaps DSPS and REM affectation are related?

Jan 12, 2015
They found the gen NEW
by: Anonymous

On Wikipedia, Dutch version, I found that the
hPer3 gen (Human Period 3)is probably responsible for inherited DSPS....

My father never goes to bed before 03.00 AM and I can't sleep before 06.00 AM. I use sleeping pills almost every night.

Might try light therapy and CBD oil.

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