Pediatric and Adolescent Sleep Health| Volume 6, ISSUE 2, P153-158, April 2020

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Sleep duration, handgun carrying, and taking a handgun to school: an analysis of a statewide sample of Florida youth

Published:January 13, 2020DOI:



      To investigate whether sleep duration is associated with adolescent handgun carrying behaviors.


      The Florida Youth Substance Abuse Survey (FYSAS) is a cross-sectional study of adolescents.


      The state of Florida.


      Middle school and high school students (n = 42,182) attending public schools in 2018.


      Dichotomous measures of general handgun carrying and taking a handgun to school within the past 12 months were modeled as dependent variables. Self-reports of hours slept on an average school night were used to construct multiple indicators of sleep duration (ordinal, dichotomous, and hourly dummy variable series) to predict general handgun carrying and taking a handgun to school in logistic regression models when accounting for several covariates.


      Adjusting for model covariates, youth who reported sleeping four or fewer hours at night had 40% greater odds of general handgun carrying than youth who reported sleeping eight or more hours. Likewise, youth who reported sleeping four or fewer hours at night had 85% greater odds of taking a handgun to school than youth who reported sleeping eight or more hours. Youth who reported sleeping five, six, or seven hours were no more likely to report handgun-carrying behaviors than youth who reported sleeping eight or more hours.


      Among youth in Florida, severe deficits in sleep are associated with general handgun carrying as well as taking a handgun to school. More modest sleep deficits are not associated with these behaviors.


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