Concurrent Associations among Sleep Problems, Indicators of Inadequate Sleep, Psychopathology, and Shared Risk Factors in a Population-based Sample of Healthy Ontario Children


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Abstract

Objectives Examine the contribution of sleep problems and indicators of inadequate sleep to psychopathology among children after accounting for shared risk and comorbid psychopathology. Methods Secondary analyses of cross-sectional data on 4- to 11-year-old (N = 1,550) children without chronic illness or developmental delay or disability. Parents provided information about sleep problems, indicators of inadequate sleep, symptoms of psychopathology, and risk factors for psychopathology. Teachers provided information about indicators of inadequate sleep and symptoms of psychopathology. Results Adjusting for risk factors and comorbid psychopathology, sleeping more than other children was related to parent-rated aggression. Nightmares and trouble sleeping were related to parent-rated anxious/depressed mood. Sleep problems were not related to attention problems. Being overtired was related to parent- and teacher-rated psychopathology. Conclusions Relations among sleep problems, indicators of inadequate sleep, and psychopathology are complex; accounting for potential confounding variables and considering sleep variables separately may clarify these relations.

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