Do you get out of bed early in the morning, invigorated and ready to face the challenges of the day? Or do you slap the snooze alarm till the last possible moment and drag your exhausted body to work? If you’re a morning person, rejoice: your circadian cycles, or natural sleep patterns, are in sync with standard work schedules and school dismissal hours.

It’s not convenient if you’re a night owl because you perform better in the afternoon and evening and stay up late, according to a recent study published in the journal Molecular Psychiatry on June 7, 2021. The researchers used sleep data from wrist activity trackers worn by over 85,000 UK Biobank Study participants, a database with detailed genetic and health data on over half a million Britons. Researchers compared sleep data to self-reports of mood and determined that people who have a disrupted sleep cycle are more prone to suffer from despair and anxiety. According to Kirsten Knutson, an associate professor of neurology and preventive medicine at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, the health problems associated with being a night owl are likely the result of being a night owl living in a morning person’s world, which disrupts their body’s circadian rhythms. Meanwhile, Dr. Jessica Tyrrell, a senior lecturer at the University of Exeter Medical School in the United Kingdom, found that having a higher misalignment was linked to having a higher odds of depression.

Finally, there’s the chicken-and-egg dilemma, which typically plagues studies that can only show a correlation rather than a causative link. Depressed people are also more prone to have irregular sleep cycles, which will need to be investigated further in the future.