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Sleep problems in the first year of elementary school: The role of sleep hygiene, gender and socioeconomic status

Published:April 08, 2017DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.sleh.2017.02.006

      Abstract

      Objectives

      To determine (1) the relationship between sleep hygiene practices and parent-reported child sleep problems in students in the first year of elementary school, (2) whether the relationship differed by (a) gender and (b) SES and (3) in a multivariate explanatory model.

      Design

      Cross-sectional survey of a population-based sample.

      Setting

      Forty-five elementary schools in metropolitan Melbourne, Australia.

      Participants

      Families of children aged 4–6 years in the first year of elementary school in Melbourne, Australia.

      Measurements

      Exposures: Parent-reported child sleep hygiene, gender and data linkage to community-based disadvantage. Outcome: Parent-reported child sleep problems. Analyses: Logistic regression models were used to examine each aim.

      Results

      Of 6635 approached parents, 4901 (74.30%) participated. In the final model, using audio devices at bedtime was associated with increased risk of child sleep problems (OR 2.12, 95% CI 1.60, 2.81) as was an inconsistent bedtime routine on school nights (OR 2.52, 95% CI 1.76, 3.60) and non-school nights (OR 1.66, 95% CI 1.09, 2.55). Boys with an inconsistent bedtime routine on non-school nights had a higher risk (OR 2.07, 95% 1.49, 2.88) than girls (OR 1.61, 95% CI 1.15, 2.28). SES was not associated with sleep problems.

      Conclusion

      Inconsistent bedtime routines and audio device use were each associated with an increased risk of parent-reported sleep problems. Associations did not differ based on SES but did for boys and girls in terms of inconsistent bedtimes on weekends. Behavioral sleep interventions targeting sleep hygiene could have similar benefits for all children, regardless of socio-economic status.

      Keywords

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