The Biological Aspect Of Hyperthymic Temperament : Light, Sleep, And Serotonin

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Summary Section Introduction and Hypothesis In 2011 researchers from Hiroshima International University of Japan published an article titled, “Biological aspect of hyperthymic temperament: light, sleep, and serotonin” in the Journal of Psychopharmacology. According to this article hyperthymic temperament—a proposed personality type-seems to be a common characteristic of bipolar disorder. Past research suggest that temperament types such as: depressive, cyclothymic, hyperthymic, irritable, and anxious (Akiskal and Mallya et al., 1987;Akiskal et al.,1995) are precursor of mood disorders. The aim of this article to gain a better understanding of the biological factors that create hyperthymic temperament, it specifically focuses on sleep and serotonin. The article also focuses on a non-biological factor that may create hyperthymic temperament: a person’s exposure to light. Akiskal and Pinto (1999) have deemed people with bipolar IV disorder—characterized by hyperthymic temperament- to be part of the soft bipolar spectrum. It has been observed that such people on average have what is considered to be a hyperthymic temperament but have occasional depressive episodes. As a result of those depressive episodes, such people are given anti-depressant drugs as treatment. In turn those drugs often lead their users having unwanted side effects, they may respond better to mood stabilizing drugs that are used to treat bipolar disorder (Stahl et al., 2008). Goodwin and Jamison’s (1990)

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