Associations Between Sleep Parameters and Problem Scores in Finnish Children

A Finnish study tested associations between sleep parameters measured objectively by activity monitors and TRF and CBCL problem scores for physically healthy 7- to 12-year-olds (Aronen et al., 2000).

Highly significant associations were found between sleep time and TRF scores. In particular, the shorter the sleep time, the higher the scores for the Aggressive Behavior, Attention Problems, Delinquent Behavior, Social Problems, and Somatic Complaints syndromes, as well as for the Externalizing and Total Problems scales.

Although total sleep time was not significantly associated with CBCL scores, long latencies before the onset of sleep were significantly associated with high scores for the CBCL Aggressive Behavior, Attention Problems, and Delinquent Behavior syndromes. The authors concluded that treating sleep problems may eliminate behavior problems in some children, especially problems that are most evident in school.

Reference: Aronen, E.T., Paavonen, J., Fjallberg, M., Soininen, M., & Torronen, J. (2000). Sleep & psychiatric symptoms in school-age children. Journal of the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, 39, 502-508.