Evening-types with small children have no option but to fight their body clock and get up early, but their bodies will still revert the moment they have the chance to. The pull of your genes is powerful – owls won’t be skipping around the park at dawn.
In theory, drugs could be developed to intervene at a molecular level. The problem is that they would need to be taken permanently to avoid reversion to chronotype.
There is just one hope for the owls and that is to age – a solution that is, after all, inevitable. As people get older their patterns tend to shift slightly towards mornings. For me that’s to come, but until then, at least I can enjoy the nightlife.
You can hear more Medical Myths on Health Check on the BBC World Service.
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