Body clock disruption linked to mood disorders

A large study confirmed that disruption to the body clock increases the risk of mood disorders and depression

The researchers found that lower relative amplitude was associated with a greater odds of reporting lifetime history of major depression or bipolar disorder (adjusted odds ratio 1.06 and 1.11; table 2). "However, these are observational associations and can not tell us whether mood disorders and reduced wellbeing cause disturbed rest-activity patterns, or whether disturbed circadian rhythmicity makes people vulnerable to mood disorders and poorer wellbeing".

Mathematical modelling was used to investigate associations between low relative amplitude (reflecting greater activity during rest periods and/or daytime inactivity) and lifetime risk of mood disorder as well as wellbeing and cognitive function.

They had also filled in questionnaires about their mood when first recruited between 2006 and 2010, and filled in an online questionnaire about their mental health in 2016.

A new study found that it is linked to improvements in mood and cognitive functioning as well as a decreased likelihood of developing major depression and bipolar disorder.

"Previous studies have identified associations between disrupted circadian rhythms and poor mental health, but these were on relatively small samples".

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The scientists studied people's circadian rhythms, which control functions such as immune systems, sleep patterns, and the release of hormones, to measure the daily rest-activity rhythms, also known as the relative amplitude.

They took account of people's age, the season they wore the activity monitor, their sex, ethnic origin, deprivation score (based on postcode), smoking status, alcohol intake, educational level, overall activity levels, body mass index, and whether they'd experienced childhood trauma.

Dr. Daniel Smith, a professor of psychiatry from the University of Glasgow and one of the lead authors of the study, said that the lesson from the research is that not only sleep is important for a person's mental health, but also the regular rhythm of being active during the daytime and being inactive during the nighttime.

This is important globally because more and more people are living in urban environments that are known to increase risk of circadian disruption and, by extension, adverse mental health outcomes.

The study was funded by the Lister Institute of Preventive Medicine and published in the peer-reviewed journal The Lancet Psychiatry.

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A new study by the University of Glasgow has found a disrupted 24-hour body clock, typically caused by things like checking Facebook at midnight or getting up to make a cup of tea in the middle of the night, could increase your risk of depression and bipolar disorder.

The study can not say conclusively that body clock disturbances are what caused the mental risk, instead of the other way round.

It's also possible that both sleep cycles and mood disorders are caused by another underlying factor we don't know about yet.

If you're a night owl, you'll probably be that way forever - you just have to learn how to best manage it.

Some researchers believe modern life may be the reason for this trigger.

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