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Child & Youth Care Forum

, Volume 38, Issue 6, pp 327–340 | Cite as

The Role of Sleep in Childhood Psychiatric Disorders

  • Candice A. Alfano
  • Amanda L. Gamble
Expert Review

Abstract

Although sleep problems often comprise core features of psychiatric disorders, inadequate attention has been paid to the complex, reciprocal relationships involved in the early regulation of sleep, emotion, and behavior. In this paper, we review the pediatric literature examining sleep in children with primary psychiatric disorders as well as evidence for the role of early sleep problems as a risk factor for the development of psychopathology. Based on these cumulative data, possible mechanisms and implications of early sleep disruption are considered. Finally, assessment recommendations for mental health clinicians working with children and adolescents are provided toward reducing the risk of and improving treatments for sleep disorders and psychopathology in children and adolescents.

Keywords

Sleep Children and Adolescents Psychiatric Disorders Assessment 

Notes

Acknowledgments

This work is supported in part by a grant from the National Institute of Mental Health (K23MH081188) awarded to the first author.

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Further Reading

  1. Dahl, R. E. (1996). The regulation of sleep and arousal: Development and psychopathology. Developmental Psychopathology, 8, 3–27.Google Scholar
  2. Ivanenko, A. (2008). Sleep and psychiatric disorders in children and adolescents. New York, NY: Informa Healthcare.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Children’s National Medical CenterThe George Washington University School of MedicineWashingtonUSA
  2. 2.Centre for Emotional HealthMacquarie UniversitySydneyAustralia

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