Center for Environmental Therapeutics


Dear Colleagues,

After four years of preparation, testing and peer review, in 2009 we published a treatment manual for Chronotherapeutics for Affective Disorders. As an international team with a strong chronobiology background and long experience in research and the clinic, we have integrated the practical details of light therapy, wake therapy (sleep deprivation) and sleep phase advance as effective antidepressants.
These methods fulfill the unmet need of a fast-acting, long-lasting antidepressant intervention with minimal residual symptoms. Our research survey supports clinical application now. We hope the manual will stimulate clinicians to test these non-pharmacologic treatments as an adjunct to medications for inpatients and outpatients alike.
We would appreciate your feedback and input. Please visit our forum for discussion.
Sincerely yours,

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Anna Wirz-Justice

Francesco Benedetti

Michael Terman

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Chronotherapeutics for Affective Disorders

Written by Anna Wirz-Justice, Francesco Benedetti & Michael Terman

A Clinician's Manual for Light and Wake Therapy

Image description Light therapy’ is the only treatment in psychiatry that directly evolved out of basic neurobiology research. It is recognized as the treatment of choice for seasonal affective disorder and has been successfully used in nonseasonal depression and other psychiatric or neurologic illnesses, including bulimia nervosa and Alzheimer’s disease. At the same time, ‘wake therapy‘ is the fastest antidepressant known. Chronotherapeutic combinations of light and wake therapy achieve fast results and, by reducing residual symptoms, also minimise relapse.

This manual introduces chronotherapeutics for depression, a new synthesis of non-pharmacologic interventions designed to accelerate remission in bipolar and unipolar patients alike. It examines the underlying clinical research, explains the involvement of the circadian timing system, and provides hands-on instructions for treating inpatients and outpatients. Written by three of the most prominent experts in the research and clinical applications of chronotherapy, this book enables clinicians to implement its principles and let their patients benefit from its practicality and effectiveness.

In this manual psychiatrists, psychologists, primary care physicians, and health care administrators find comprehensive overviews of theory, research background, practical guidelines, and future prospects. It is also essential reading for practitioners of sleep medicine. View a selction of chapter excerpts.

CET encourages patients to present this book to their doctors to introduce them to chronotherapeutics and encourage and assist their supervision of light therapy.

Read the Reviews in Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica or Journal of Psychiatric Practice.


From the Table of Contents:

  • Introduction
  • Individual Chronotherapeutic Elements: Light, Wake Therapy and Sleep Phase Advance
  • Integrative Chronotherapeutics: Combinations of Light, Wake Therapy and Sleep Phase Advance
  • Procedures in the Inpatient Setting
  • Practical Details for Wake Therapy
  • Practical Details for Light Therapy
  • Outpatient Treatment Strategies
  • The Range of Chronotherapeutic Indications
  • Light Therapy for Children and Adolescents
  • Light and Wake Therapy for Older Patients
  • The Visually Impaired: More Sleep Disturbances, More Depression
  • Endogenous and Exogenous Melatonin
  • Drugs that Affect Rhythms (Chronobiotics)
  • Social Rhythm Therapy
  • Chronobiology in Everyday Life

Order the book directly from our publisher !


All royalties are dedicated to CET’s nonprofit educational and research initiatives.

Our Organization


What Is CET All About ?

We're here to help — as an independent, non-profit professional agency dedicated to education and research on the new environmental therapies. We offer a variety of services including background information, self-assessment questionnaires, and environmental therapy products. For accessing the self-assessment questionnaires as well as to read our materials in other languages please visit our sister site.