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    Children’s Sleep Quality Linked to Mothers’ Insomnia



    Summary: A new study reveals children are more likely to experience poor sleep patterns if their mother suffers from insomnia. However, there is no link between children’s sleep quality and insomnia in their fathers.

    Source: Sleep Medicine.

    According to new research by the University of Warwick and the University of Basel, children of mothers who suffer from insomnia symptoms fall asleep later, get less sleep, and spend less time in deep sleep. This improper sleep cycle consequently affects their mental wellbeing and development.

    The researchers analysed data from nearly 200 healthy 7-12 year old children and their parents. The quality of sleep was assessed in the children during one night with in-home electroencephalography (EEG) – a method used to record electrical activity in the brain and makes it possible to identify different sleep stages. At the same time parents reported their own insomnia symptoms and their children’s sleep problems.

    The researchers analysed the relationship between the parents’ insomnia symptoms and their children’s sleep quality. They observed that children whose mothers have insomnia symptoms sleep more poorly, as measured by EEG.

    However, there was no connection between the fathers’ sleep problems and children’s poor sleep cycle, as evaluated by EEG.

    The study finding highlights the reason why children’s sleep is more closely related to mothers’ sleep than to fathers’ sleep is that, on overall average, mothers still spend more time with their children than fathers and therefore, a stronger mutual influence is likely to happen.

    Published: Sleep Medicine.

    Contact: Sakari Lemola University of Bielefeld, Department of Psychology.

    Details: Image source IStock


    Hi, I’m Aarti, My Psychoanalytical approach towards my clients is to empower them to better their lives through improving their relationship with themselves. I believe shame and guilt is a common barrier to change. I aim to guide my clients through re authoring their narratives where shame, guilt, and other problems have less power and take up less space.

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