Circadian Rhythm Disorder in Children and Adolescents
Delayed Sleep Phase Disorder (DSPD) is a chronic disorder of sleep timing.
People with DSPD tend to fall asleep at very late times, with difficulties getting up in the morning on school or work days, and sleeping in late on weekends. However, unlike a typical insomnia, patients actually have normal sleep if allowed to follow their own their own schedule (eg. 4 am to noon).
The issue is really one of time, and the tendency toward a delayed sleep pattern only becomes problamatic when it comes into conflict with school and work related pressures to awaken early.
Treatment options for Delayed Sleep Phase Disorder include chronotherapy, bright light therapy, and appropriately timed melatonin.