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Definition - What does Desynchrony mean?

Desynchrony is a state of misaligned biorhythms where sleep/wake patterns do not coincide with external cues from light exposure within a regular twenty-four hour cycle. In the brain, the hypothalamus serves as the locus for the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN), cells that respond to light sensitivity via the optic nerve lending to homeostatic functions in the body including heart rate, body temperature, blood pressure, and secretion of melatonin to promote sleep.

SureHire explains Desynchrony

Desynchrony is often a factor of a circadian rhythm disorder that falls outside the general norm of regular sleep habits. A sleep technician conducts a polysomnography (sleep study) to identify independent variables that might suggest circadian rhythm sleep disorders carrying psychological and epidemiological risks that can lead to depression, dementia, and obesity. Baseline metrics identify deviations in brain wave activity, blood oxygen levels, body positioning, breathing patterns, eye and limb movements, and heart rate as the criteria in diagnosing sleep disorders.

Common examples of circadian rhythm sleep disorders include advanced sleep phase syndrome (ASPS), delayed sleep phase syndrome (DSPS), irregular sleep-wake rhythm, shift-work sleep disorder (SWSD), and jet lag. For many people, erratic work schedules involve rotating shifts and frequent traveling across different time zones as a job requirement. However, desynchrony is a health concern, since it causes circadian rhythm cycles to adapt to different circumstances and new environments on an inconsistent basis.

Because desynchrony is a telltale marker of circadian rhythm disorders, consulting a primary physician or sleep clinician is beneficial to make a diagnosis and determine a proper course of action that tailors to the physiological needs of the patient. Treatment methods can entail bright light therapy as a means to realign circadian rhythm cycles combined with prescription medication fitting for a particular disorder. Early detection of sleep disorders is imperative in targeting abnormal biorhythms, which can induce cognitive impairments and chronic fatigue affecting job performance.

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