Previously published in Examiner
Part 2 of the Circadian Rhythm series
Most Montrealers complain they do not get enough sleep. Yet, sleep effects are physical and mental health. Not having enough sleep effects our mood, our stamina, our home-life and career, and our social relationships
Sleep is an important human function which is essential for good physical health and good mental health. Even though sleep is so important many Montrealers take sleeping for granted. They either sleep too much or more often than not, sleep less than is recommended for good health. Montrealers will catnap rather than sleep, burn the midnight oil studying, play on the computer, or just insist that they are too busy too sleep.
Scientists have found a genetic component for circadian rhythms and have been able to locate the genes responsible for circadian rhythms in humans, mice, fruit flies, and some fungi. A change in the environment can also change the response from the circadian rhythm and bring the body’s equilibrium out of balance.
Circadian rhythms and sleep
Circadian rhythms have a strong role in sleep cycles. Simply put, they are responsible for producing a hormone called melatonin, which is responsible for making us drowsy. The SCN is conveniently located just above the optic nerves and therefore they will receive sensations from the eyes which filter light. When it is dark outside the optic nerve will relay the information onto the SCN which will then produce more melatonin. Melatonin will cause us to become sleepy since nighttime is the normal time humans sleep. Of course there are exceptions, some people work the night shift etc, but generally speaking this is the way we were biologically programmed.
Lifestyle can interfere with natural our Circadian rhythm
As stated before our circadian rhythm is based on a 24-hours cycle, however, our lifestyle may not be in sync with that cycle. A person who works nights or works on different shifts throws the circadian rhythm off balance.
For a list of private sleep disorder clinics in Montreal click here:
Here are a few more Montreal sleep clinics
Montreal Sleep Clinic
4427, rue Sherbrooke O, Westmount,
QC H3Z 1E5 (514) 938-0995 ‘Ž
Sleep Apnea Solutions
Hopital Mount Sinai Montreal