This Doctor Is Trying To Destigmatize Sleeping Until Noon For Millennials

The U.S. is a puritanical country and has a puritanical work ethic, which means rising early with the sun, working until dark and then going to bed before you burn through too many sinful candles or “Devil Sticks.” Those values don’t necessarily compute to a modern society, where people work all sorts of jobs in all sorts of time zones, yet most people still feel guilty if they sleep in late. A doctor named Syed Moin Hassan wants to get the word out that sleeping all day is actually normal and even healthy for some people.

In a Twitter thread, he explained that he sees a lot of patients who naturally have delayed circadian sleep rhythms, where going to bed real late and subsequently waking up late feels good to them.

“I don’t know who needs to hear this BUT YOU ARE NOT LAZY IF YOU ARE WAKING UP AT NOON. I have spent hours with patients with delayed circadian sleep phase trying to destigmatize sleeping late and waking up late,” he started.

He then shared a story of a young patient who was convinced he was lazy because his body wanted to sleep in. He’d never heard of circadian sleep patterns and was feeling unwell enough to be at the doctor’s office, so he probably needed to hear it.

Hassan said there are two pattern extremes:

People at extremes of circadian rhythm either sleep really early and wake up early (advanced circadian sleep phase) or sleep really late and wake up late (delayed circadian sleep phase).

Then he tried to answer a question from another doctor, who asked, “How do we differentiate if it’s a genuine medical condition. The difficulty is that half of the productive day has passed by for majority. Especially for people in the regular jobs.”

There are ways to adjust your circadian rhythm with melatonin and light therapy, which is necessary for some folks with regular 9-5 jobs. There were a lot of people in the comments who seemed to think the best thing to do was accept your natural sleep cycle and find a way to live by it. It’s the world that’s wrong for trying to force everyone in the same box:

As someone who can’t help but wake up at the crack of dawn, changing my sleep patterns sounds almost as great as self-acceptance. Make the choice that feels best for you and don’t be afraid to ask for help.

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