[Skip to Content]
[Skip to Content Landing]
October 1968

Sleep and Depression: Further Considerations

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1968;19(4):445-452. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1968.01740100061009

THE SLEEP pattern of 21 psychiatric inpatients diagnosed as suffering from depression was compared with that of a control group. The differences between the two groups have been described in detail elsewhere.1

The depressed patients had less actual sleep, stage 4 sleep, and rapid eye movement (REM) sleep; and more awake and drowsy time. They took longer to become drowsy and to fall asleep and awoke significantly earlier in the morning. They had more spontaneous awakenings (especially from stages 1, REM, and 2 sleep). The disturbances were maximal in the last third of the night.

The 21 depressed patients constituted a mixed group. The variables included severity and duration of the illness, therapy, age, psychotic-neurotic features, etc. It has been suggested that the nature of the sleep disturbance present in a particular depressed patient may be a consequence of severity,2 the