Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Real-life exposure to violence disrupts a child's sleep habits

Date:
June 13, 2012
Source:
American Academy of Sleep Medicine
Summary:
Violence in a child's world impacts sleep, new research shows. The result is measurable, affected by the severity of the violence and can last over time. The more severe the violence, the more sleep is impacted. Characteristics of the violent act also touch different aspects of the child's sleep. Children who are victimized during a violent event tend to sleep less and more poorly; children who witness homicide have more inconsistent sleep as time passes.

When violence shatters a child's world, the torment can continue into their sleep, according to researchers in Cleveland. The impact is measurable and affected by the severity of the violence, and the effects can last over time.

Related Articles


The study, being presented June 12 at SLEEP 2012, shows how the severity of a violent event affects a child's quality and quantity of sleep. The more severe the violence, the more sleep is impacted. Trouble with nightmares and insomnia have long been associated with exposure to violence, but the Cleveland study found that characteristics of the violent act touch different aspects of the child's sleep.

For example, children who are victimized during a violent event tend to sleep less and more poorly than children who witnessed a violent event but were not victimized. Children who witness homicide have more inconsistent sleep as time passes since the violent event occurred.

"Violence permeates our society, and this work is showing that experiencing even a single violent event as a victim or as a witness may influence sleep behavior in different ways, which in turn may negatively affect a child's health and functioning," said James Spilsbury, PhD, the study's principal investigator.

Children who do not get enough sleep are prone to development and behavior problems. Poor sleep also has been linked to a number of serious health risks, including high blood pressure, heart disease, stroke, depression, diabetes, obesity and accidents.

Spilsbury and colleagues at Case Western Reserve University and the Cleveland Clinic Multidisciplinary Research Training Program measured the sleep of 46 children, ages 8 to 16, who were participating in a social service program for children exposed to violence. Ethnicity was mixed, but the children were largely disadvantaged and living in urban settings.

Sleep data were collected for seven days by actigraphy, a monitoring method that uses a patient-worn sensor to measure activity during the day and at night. Follow-up was conducted three months later. In analyzing the results, Spilsbury and associates controlled for such factors as age, sex, family income and exposure to violence in the previous year.

"Even after controlling for the possible effects of exposure to violence in the previous year, we saw that the severity of the more recent event had a measurable, negative influence on a child's quantity and quality of sleep," Spilsbury said.

The abstract "Association between exposure to violence and objectively measured sleep characteristics: a pilot longitudinal study" is being presented at SLEEP 2012, the 26th annual meeting of the Associated Professional Sleep Societies in Boston.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Academy of Sleep Medicine. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

American Academy of Sleep Medicine. "Real-life exposure to violence disrupts a child's sleep habits." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 13 June 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/06/120613091043.htm>.
American Academy of Sleep Medicine. (2012, June 13). Real-life exposure to violence disrupts a child's sleep habits. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 2, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/06/120613091043.htm
American Academy of Sleep Medicine. "Real-life exposure to violence disrupts a child's sleep habits." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/06/120613091043.htm (accessed March 2, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Mind & Brain News

Monday, March 2, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

This Nasal Treatment Could Help Ease Migraine Pain

This Nasal Treatment Could Help Ease Migraine Pain

Newsy (Mar. 2, 2015) Researchers gave lidocaine to 112 patients, and about 88 percent of the subjects said they needed less migraine-relief medicine the next day. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
How Facebook Use Can Lead To Depression

How Facebook Use Can Lead To Depression

Newsy (Mar. 1, 2015) Margaret Duffy of the University of Missouri talks about her study on the social network and the envy and depression that Facebook use can cause. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
The Best Foods to Battle Stress

The Best Foods to Battle Stress

Buzz60 (Feb. 26, 2015) If you&apos;re dealing with anxiety, there are a few foods that can help. Krystin Goodwin (@krystingoodwin) has the best foods to tame stress. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Sleeping Too Much Or Too Little Might Increase Stroke Risk

Sleeping Too Much Or Too Little Might Increase Stroke Risk

Newsy (Feb. 26, 2015) People who sleep more than eight hours per night are 45 percent more likely to have a stroke, according to a University of Cambridge study. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins