Circadian Sleep Disorders Network - Advocating for people with misaligned body clocks
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ON THIS PAGE (links):
What Are CRSDs?
*** Join! ***
*** Take the Survey! ***
Help Spread Awareness
News Items
NIH Launches Huge Study
Board Elects Officers
BBC Interview
NIH Advisory Board
Board Election Results
Registry to be Used in Research
N24 Awareness Day
CSD-N New Secretary
CSD-N Seeks Sleep Labs
Nobel Prize for CR Genes
NORD Non-24 Article
Beth Macdonald
Early Survey Results
Archived News
More About Us
Email List
Q&A Docs (FAQs)
Basic Fact Sheet
Find a Doctor
Start School Later
Amazon to Donate to CSD-N
Welzoo to Donate to CSD-N
Websites Link to CSD-N
Recently Added References
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Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter
Media Kit
Our Email & Office
The shortcut also gets you to this page, with less typing! But don't forget the hyphen!

Our Mission

Circadian Sleep Disorders Network is an independent nonprofit organization dedicated to improving the lives of people with chronic circadian rhythm disorders.

We aim to increase awareness within the medical community and among the general public, to provide emotional support and practical ideas for people living with these disorders, to inform patients and health care providers about treatment options, to encourage research into circadian rhythms, and to advocate for accommodations in education and employment for people with circadian rhythm sleep disorders.

Note that Circadian Sleep Disorders Network is not affiliated with any pharmaceutical, medical device, or other company.

What Are Circadian Rhythm Sleep Disorders?

Circadian Rhythm Sleep Disorders (CRSDs or CSDs) are neurological disorders in which the sleep-wake cycle is out of sync with the day-night cycle. These include in particular Delayed Sleep Phase Disorder and Non-24-Hour Sleep-Wake Disorder. Also included are Advanced Sleep Phase Disorder, Irregular Sleep Wake Disorder, and Shift Work Disorder, which are defined here.

Delayed Sleep Phase Disorder (DSPD), also called Delayed Sleep Phase Syndrome (DSPS), is characterized by an inability to fall asleep until very late at night, with the resulting need to sleep late in the morning or into the afternoon. Questions? See our DSPS Q&A.

Advanced Sleep Phase Disorder (ASPD), also called Advanced Sleep Phase Syndrome (ASPS), is the opposite. It is characterized by falling asleep very early in the evening, and waking up in the wee hours of early morning, unable to sleep further.

Non-24-Hour Sleep-Wake Disorder (Non-24), also called Free-Running Disorder (FRD), is a condition in which a person's day length is significantly longer than 24 hours, so that sleep times get later each day, cycling around the clock in a matter of days or weeks. Questions? See our Non-24 Q&A.

Some people use the term reverse sleep, referring to the fact that sometimes people with DSPD and Non-24 end up sleeping during daylight and being awake at night.

Please refer to our descriptions, definitions, and treatments pages for more details, and print out our brochure, fact sheet, and/or Q&A documents to give to others.

Become a Member! or Renew Now!

We can progress toward our mission of promoting awareness and accommodation only if we can demonstrate that we represent a community of people who suffer from these disorders. Please join now, so we can better help you and the CSD community in achieving our common goals. Together we have a voice! More details are on the Join page.

Last year's members: if you haven't renewed yet, please do so now. Renew now!

We are a 501(c)(3) organization based in the U.S., serving the global circadian sleep disorders community. We are a patient organization, entirely supported by member dues and contributions. We are all unpaid volunteers.

Take Our Survey!

Circadian Sleep Disorders Network has launched its PATIENT POWERED REGISTRY AND SURVEY for people with Circadian Rhythm Sleep Disorders. The registry is open to anyone with a circadian rhythm sleep disorder from any country. You can sign up for the registry and take the survey (it's free) at

By collecting information from a large number of people actually suffering from these disorders, we can stimulate research into causes, treatments, and effects of circadian disorders.

The information you provide can jump-start research on some of the questions we've been asking about for years - but only if enough people participate. Sign up now (free), and please take the survey.

Note that the signup questions that you get first are not the survey! Part of the signup process with AltaVoice involves answering two pages of demographic questions like age, gender, race, etc. This is not our survey. After you've finished signing up you will be taken to our survey, called "Circadian Rhythm Sleep Disorders", which asks about your circadian disorders, sleep habits, treatment, and other disorders. Our survey has multiple pages. The actual number is dependent on how you answer some key questions. Please be sure to complete the entire survey. Otherwise, your responses will not be used in analysis.

For more information, click here.

Researchers: You can view the survey questions without taking the survey here. You can request participants to contact you for further research by contacting AltaVoice (website) or emailing Circadian Sleep Disorders Network for further information.

Help Us Spread Awareness

image of brochure cover We are asking our members and followers to give our brochure, and/or our Q&A booklets, to their sleep doctors and their general doctors on their next visits. It is vital to all of us suffering from circadian disorders that more doctors and their support staff understand these disorders and how disruptive they can be. The more doctors who know about us, the more patients we can reach, inform, and support. And the larger our membership, the more credible our voice on behalf of all people with circadian sleep disorders.

You can print out the brochure on US letter paper (8½x11) or on A4 paper (non--US). Booklets can be printed for DSPS or for Non-24 (the same file can be printed on either US or A4 paper). Alternatively you can email us at to request a printed copy of any or all these documents (please specify which). Be sure to include your name and full postal address. We will send these at no charge to you.

News Items

NIH Launches Huge Study - Please Participate

The (US) National Institutes of Health (NIH) is launching an unprecedented study, called All of Us, that will attempt to enroll a whopping one million participants from across the country. The goals:

The NIH wants input from all of us: which research questions should this vast study help answer? This is where we owls come in! We want more research on what makes our body clocks tick to the beat of a different drummer—and how to reset our clocks. We can also study sleep hours and habits, both for connections with other disorders and illnesses, and to attempt to get a handle on the incidence of CRDs.

Submit your research idea/s here:

More info here:

Board Elects Officers

CSD-N's Board of Directors held elections for officers to serve for the next two years (through Jan 2020). The previous officers all agreed to run again, and no new people were nominated. The officers are:

Board Member Interviewed on BBC

Last spring we received email from BBC (U.K. broadcast network) asking whether we could discuss sleep disorders in visually impaired people for a blind and visually impaired audience. Board member Lynn McGovern agreed to sit for the interview. It was edited and aired as part of a larger radio program, Why Can't I Sleep, the June 27, 2017 edition of In Touch. You can listen to it here; Lynn's segment starts 5 minutes into the program and runs about 4 minutes.

CRD patients represented in Washington

by Susan Plawsky

I recently returned from the December 7-8 meeting of the Sleep Disorders Research Advisory Board (SDRAB), held just outside of Washington, DC. I'm a patient representative on the board, which identifies research priorities for the National Center on Sleep Disorders Research (NCSDR), part of the (U.S.) National Institutes of Health.

Once again, I made my pitch for studies of circadian rhythm disorders (CRDs). I said that most government-funded studies of circadian rhythms (CRs) focus on a) the workings of normal CRs and b) the effect of CRs on health and disease. All are important, of course. But we need studies of circadian rhythm disorders! After all, this is the National Center on Sleep Disorders Research. I pointed out that CRs are a hot topic in medicine now; indeed, the 2017 Nobel Prize in Medicine was awarded to a team of CR researchers. What better way to understand CRs than to study people with disordered CRs? What better way to help people suffering with CRDs? Current treatments of CRDs are based, in large part, on the workings of normal CRs—which may explain why treatments often fail. In order to help people like us, researchers must study people like us.

Dr. Phyllis Zee stood up and backed me up. A prominent sleep and circadian-medicine clinician and researcher, she is a former SDRAB chair and one of the few researchers who study people with CRDs. She's also a member of the Circadian Sleep Disorders Network (CSD-N) Medical Advisory Board. It felt wonderful to have her in our corner.

After the meeting, Dr. Zee told me that the CRD community shouldn't rely solely on the government for research funding. She encouraged us to raise money and fund the studies we want. A tall order! Perhaps we need a celebrity with a CRD to pull strings, raise money, and donate to the cause.

I wish I could report that my board participation has been making a difference. Instead, I feel frustrated with researchers who seemingly lose sight of the patient's plight. I feel frustrated with the bureaucratic NIH, where the wheels turn very slowly. I feel frustrated with the many years that often pass between medical discovery and new treatments.

All that said . . . I learned of two promising developments for people with CRDs:

  1. The NCSDR and the SDRAB consider the identification of sleep and CR biomarkers a high priority. Biomarkers are testable, measurable biological indicators of health or disease. A good CR biomarker will enable investigators to determine the CRs of study subjects—a boon for CR research. A good CR biomarker will help us know—not just guesstimate—the ebb and flow of our CRs, enabling us to properly time treatment. (Melatonin is considered a biomarker for CRs and CRDs. But melatonin testing is limited to research studies and the home. Home tests are time-consuming, challenging, and not covered by insurance. A more practical biomarker test would be most welcome.)
  2. The NCSDR is interested in working with medical researchers to correlate existing genetic data (collected during previous studies) with CRs and CRDs. In essence, this genetic data would become a biomarker.

Thanks to James Fadden, vice president of CSD-N, for attending as a member of the public and updating the SDRAB on the CSD-N registry. Thanks, too, to patient Alexandra Escalera, who has a CRD plus several other sleep disorders. She drove a considerable distance to tell her harrowing story and remind researchers that science should serve people. (Peter Mansbach, CSD-N president, was ill and attended remotely, via the Web.)

Any feedback? Please email me at

--Dedicated to the memory of Nina Beth Macdonald, tireless supporter and champion of people with CRDs

Board Election Results

The election for the CSD-N Board of Directors has concluded. We welcome new board members Karen Martin, Jen Heller Meservey, and Jason Myatt. Incumbent Peter Mansbach was re-elected to the board.

Registry Finds Application in Research Project

Dr Phyllis Zee, noted sleep researcher (and member of the CSD-N Medical Advisory Board) is organizing a new study of circadian disordered patients, and has expressed interest in using the Circadian Sleep Disorders Network registry to recruit patients. This will involve genetic sampling, which can be done at the patient's location.

Reminder: if you haven't yet signed up for the registry and taken our Circadian Rhythm Sleep Disorders survey, please do so at .

N24 Awareness Day

Contributed by James Fadden
Image by Maxfield Sparrow
Nov 17, 2017
N24 Alice Through Looking Glass It's that time of year again! Friday, November 24th is the 5th annual N24 Awareness Day, the day the online N24 community has chosen to spread knowledge of our condition (Non-24-hour sleep-wake disorder aka Non-24 or N24). To commemorate the day you are encouraged to write, draw, compose, film, or otherwise depict your experience of N24 for a world that has far too little awareness of our existence, let alone what our lives are like.

This year's theme is "Through the Looking Glass." Most people are familiar with the story of Alice, who passed through the looking glass into Wonderland, where everything was strange and different. Those of us with N24 pass through our own sort of looking glass, spiraling down a rabbit hole of twisted time. Because our body/brain clocks set us virtually travelling through time zones, we inhabit our own looking glass world, living among others but always set apart by the barriers of time -- as invisible but often as impassable as panes of glass.

To participate in N24 Awareness Day, all you have to do is post something somewhere on or near November 24th. We have N24 so we're not really bound by clocks and calendars, right? If you don't have anyplace to post your contribution or if you'd like to have it also published elsewhere, you are very welcome to submit it to the N24 Awareness Day blog at

You can also pick up this year's participation badge at the blog: Feel free to use the participation icon any way you choose. It's great if you want to link it back to the blog, but that's not required. Feel free to copy the icon to your own server or just directly link to it from the blog.

Here's hoping we all have another creative, productive N24 Awareness Day this year!

A related article in honor of N24 Day, also by James Fadden, about the Nobel Prize for circadian rhythms appears here.

CSD-N Welcomes New Secretary

Jen Heller Meservey Oct 23, 2017
CSD-N Board of Directors welcomes our new secretary, Jen Heller Meservey. Thanks, Jen, for volunteering to help.

CSD-N Seeks Sleep Labs That Accommodate Our Hours

Patient wired for sleep study Oct 2017
CSD-N is looking to create a list of sleep labs that will accommodate sleep tests (polysomnograms) at our unusual sleep hours. We believe that a lot of the diagnostic value of a polysomnogram is lost when you aren't sleeping at a time determined by your body's internal clock. So It would be of great value to our community to know which labs will adjust to allow patients to sleep at the time appropriate for them.

If you know of such a lab, please send the information to

Thanks to Karen Martin for initiating this project.

The goal is to post a list of sleep labs, analogous to our doctor list. And, by the way, if you can recommend a doctor who is knowledgeable about DSPD and/or Non-24 (and isn't already on our list), please send us that information too.

Nobel Prize for Circadian Rhythm Genetics

Circadian Genes Oct 2, 2017
The Nobel Assembly at Karolinska Institutet has awarded the 2017 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine jointly to Jeffrey C. Hall, Michael Rosbash, and Michael W. Young for their discoveries of molecular mechanisms controlling the circadian rhythm.

"[Dr.] Young said that one of the most important areas of study built on their work is what happens when the clock runs too fast or too slow. Most recently, scientists have discovered that one percent of humans worldwide have a mutation in the clock genes that is associated with delayed sleep or being a night owl. He said many of these individuals show up at sleep clinics wondering what to do, and the work provides a target to work on."
Washington Post, Oct 2, 2017

NORD Non-24 Article Updated

Sept 2017
Our vice president James Fadden and Dr. Katherine Sharkey have completed an update of their report on Non-24-hour sleep-wake disorder for the National Organization of Rare Disorders (NORD). You can read it at

In 2012 CSD-N requested that NORD include Non-24 in their database of rare disorders. James Fadden wrote the original report for the database along with Dr. Sharkey of Brown University. It was published in 2013.

The updated report contains new information published during the last four years. There are new sections on Differences in Cellular Clock Function and on Genetics, as well as other changes throughout the report. There are also many new references.

It is probably the most thorough reference available on the symptoms, physiology, and causes of both blind and sighted Non-24. The report discusses treatments but not in the same degree of detail. That is the policy of NORD which prefers their reports to focus on descriptions of the disorders rather than treatments.

Beth Macdonald

Aug, 2017
Beth Macdonald With great sadness I have to report the death of Beth Macdonald. I've known Beth on the Niteowl email list for over 15 years. She was an active participant, welcoming new people and sharing her experiences with delayed sleep phase. She was one of the founders of Circadian Sleep Disorders Network back in 2011, and served on its Board of Directors ever since. She posted frequently on various Facebook groups (as Nina Beth), and was supportive of new group members and often answered their questions about CRDs. She maintained the accuracy of various circadian sleep disorder entries in Wikipedia, and often wrote journalists and others about inaccuracies in their articles on sleep. And she was a friend.

More details from her sister:

She was born to William and Alice Macdonald in Seattle, WA on June 10, 1942. She had a brother born in 1945, and a sister born in 1949. The family lived in Anchorage, AK, Friday Harbor, WA, Renton, WA, and Seattle, WA. Neena graduated from Roosevelt High School in Seattle. She was active in the Mountaineers (skiing, hiking, climbing) and Skandia Folkdance Club, and performed with Nordiska Folkdance while in Seattle. She moved to Norway in 1971. She remained in Norway with occasional visits "home" to visit family and friends in the US. She was a teacher, had a large online presence in groups including genealogy and circadian sleep disorders, and she was a good friend to many. She died on July 6, 2017 in Bergen from complications related to cancer.

Some Preliminary Survey Results

Survey home page Circadian Sleep Disorders Network, in partnership with AltaVoice, a wholly owned subsidiary of Invitae Corporation, is sponsoring a registry and survey. Please take the survey, if you have not already done so. We need more participants to be able to find connections between answers, for example whether perceived sensitivity to light can predict which treatments work best. And researchers want more participants so they can select people with the characteristics they want to study.

Here are some highlights of the preliminary results:

View more results, with numbers and charts, at These are preliminary results based on responses of the 208 people who have completed the survey as of May 28.

For more information on the survey itself, see

Archived News

Archived News 2017
Archived News 2016
Archived News 2015
Archived News 2014
Archived News 2013
Archived News 2011 - 2012 (incomplete)

More About Us

Niteowl Email List

This is a free mailing list support group for people with DSPS and Non-24 to share their experiences. It's a good place for people just discovering these disorders to hear how others deal with them, as well as for long-time participants to get support and to provide support to others. There are often discussions of evolving treatment, useful to all. For further information, and to sign up, go to

Note that membership in Circadian Sleep Disorders Network and membership on this email list are completely separate.


Circadian Sleep Disorders Network is affiliated with this email list, and our volunteers assist the list administrator with some chores. CSD-N was formed by participants on this list, and many of our members post regularly. But we have no control over what appears or who can join, and list membership is completely separate from membership in CSD-N.


Once you've signed up for the list, you post by sending an email to Everyone on the mailing list receives that post as an email, and you receive everyone else's posts as emails. If you don't like to get separate emails, you can opt to receive in digest form, typically one email a day containing all the day's posts. You make that selection (after signing up) by logging in at


There are some rules:
The rules that the list software enforces are

One frequent problem is that people with more than one e-mail account try to send from an address that isn't registered as a member here. An infrequent problem is that a few e-mail providers aren't accepted at all so another e-mail account must be (acquired and) used. gmail generally works well.

An additional rule is PLEASE do not just reply to a message with a subject line containing "Niteowl Digest, Vol xxx, Issue xxx". That is obviously not informative and if you aren't careful you may include the whole list of messages in the Digest, making your message too large for the list.

Digest or not, it is a good idea to trim whatever you are replying to leaving just enough for people to know what you are replying to.

Of course, don't be snippy or insulting, and please take off-topic conversations off-list. And no advertising.


Once you've signed up for the list, you can also browse previous posts in the archive at

There is also a mirror of the archive on Yahoo at This is useful when the primary archives are not working, as sometimes happens. Login to your Yahoo account, or create one (free) - link is at the top right on that page. Then you have to Join the Yahoo copy of the list - this is separate from signing up for the list itself - there is a button on the Yahoo page to do this.


To unsubscribe from the Niteowl email list go to
and follow the directions at the bottom of the page. You will need to know your list password.

If you do not know your list password, send email to
with PASSWORD in the subject line. This email must come from the same email address that you subscribed from (which is the one you your incoming Niteowl list emails go to). Your password will be sent to you.

If that doesn't work, you can unsubscribe by sending email to
with UNSUBSCRIBE in the subject line. This email must come from the same email address that you subscribed from (which is the one you your incoming Niteowl list emails go to). If you do this, you will get an email back asking you to confirm. You must follow the instructions and confirm, or you will not be unsubscribed.


For more (or more current) help on list commands, send email to
with HELP in the subject line.

Our Brochure

image of brochure cover Our brochure is geared to the general public, to introduce DSPD (DSPS) and Non-24 to people experiencing symptoms of these disorders, and to their families. Please distribute it to anyone who may be interested. Print on lightly colored paper for some color, if you like. We used ivory.

Brochure - web display     Print on US letter size paper, PDF
Print on A4 size paper, PDF

The web display version shows the brochure panels in easy-to-read order. The print versions are meant to be printed out on both sides of a sheet of paper, then folded in thirds, creating a brochure. (In the print version, the panels will appear out of order on-screen.)

Our Q&A Documents (FAQs)

We have posted documents describing DSPD (DSPS) and Non-24, in an easy to read Question-and-Answer format. These are designed to give to family members, friends, employers, and school personnel, to help them understand these disorders. Feel free to print and distribute these. There are two different (but similar) versions, one for DSPS and the other for Non-24:

DSPD Q&A - web     printer     booklet*
Non-24 Q&A - web     printer booklet*

The web formats display nicely in your browser. The printer versions are formatted by your browser for printing a multi-page document. The booklet forms are pre-formatted PDF files that you can print on two sides of a single sheet of paper, which then folds in half into a booklet.
* When printing the booklet, be sure to flip on the short edge (select this option if you have a double-sided printer).

In Other Languages:

Spanish:     DSPS Preguntas y Respuestas - web     printer    
     No-24 Preguntas y Respuestas - web     printer    
German:     DSPS F&A - web     printer    
     Non-24 F&A - web     printer    

Our Basic Fact Sheet

We also have a one page Basic Fact Sheet that introduces DSPD and Non-24 to people who don't know about them. It's a quick and easy read, just the basics.

Our Infographic

infographic thumbnail Former board member and artist Lily Style has created an infographic describing Circadian Rhythm Sleep Disorders. View it in your browser at Feel free to repost the graphic to help raise awareness.

You can print it directly from your browser (we suggest making the browser window full screen - the image will resize). We are also posting JPG images in various proportions for printing directly on different sizes of paper:

You can download these (in Microsoft Windows, right-click and select Save As). To print in Microsoft Windows, right-click on the downloaded file (in File Explorer) and select Print. Or open it in a photo- or image-processing program to use that program's features such as borderless printing.

CSD-N Merchandise

CSD-N mug We are offering merchandise (mugs, T-shirts, tote bags, bumper stickers, and a messenger bag) with our name and logo through CafePress, at (Note: if you just search CafePress you will find this merchandise, but at a higher price!)

Start School Later

Circadian Sleep Disorders Network is a Coalition Partner of Start School Later. We understand only too well the difficulties many teens have with early school start time, and we support the move to start school later.

Amazon Will Donate Part of Your Purchase to CSD-N

Circadian Sleep Disorders Network
The first time you go to you will be asked to confirm Circadian Sleep Disorders Network as your charity. Amazon will remember your selection. But you do have to go to instead of simply, for each purchase, if you want 0.5% of that purchase to go to CSD-N. Note that you pay the same amount either way - through Smile the 0.5% goes to us, otherwise it goes to Amazon.

We have already received several contribution checks from Amazon! Please select Circadian Sleep Disorders Network as your charity.

Amazon and the Amazon logo and AmazonSmile and the AmazonSmile logo are trademarks of, Inc. or its affiliates.

Welzoo Will Donate to CSD-N

Sign up at Welzoo by clicking here. Thereafter, every time you go to their home page,, Circadian Sleep Disorders Network gets a penny. They're paying for you to view their advertisements. Make it your browser's startup page and watch the contributions add up!

Websites Link to CSD-N

We have asked other sleep- and health-related web sites to add a link to the CSD-N website, so interested people could learn more about circadian sleep disorders. That also helps our search ranking, making it easier for others to find us. Sites which have linked to us include:

In addition,, which was no longer being maintained, now forwards their traffic to us.

You can help: email other websites with a request to link to Circadian Sleep Disorders Network at Please use this primary address when suggesting links, not the shortcut.

Recently Added References

This is a list of refences added to our Info page since the last newsletter. The newsletter lists references added since the previous newsletter. These are generally available to members only.


This web site is intended to provide generic information about CSDs, and is not intended to replace discussions with a healthcare provider. You should not use the information on this website for diagnosing or treating a medical or health condition. All decisions regarding patient care should be made with your healthcare provider.


Office: 4619 Woodfield Rd, Bethesda, MD 20814
Phone: By appointment only, please.

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© 2018 Circadian Sleep Disorders Network
Last modified Feb 20, 2018
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