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Sleep Med. 2005 Jul;6(4):319-24. Epub 2005 Apr 1.

Cultural influences on the bedtime behaviors of young children.

Author information

1
Division of Pediatric Sleep Medicine and Kosair Children's Hospital Research Institute, Department of Pediatrics, University of Louisville School of Medicine, 571 S. Floyd St., Ste. 439, Louisville, KY 40202, USA. valerie.crabtree@louisville.edu

Abstract

BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE:

This study was designed to assess potential relationships of race and socioeconomic status (SES) to bedtime behavior from a community sample of 2- to 7-year-old children.

PATIENTS AND METHODS:

A previously validated sleep questionnaire was administered to parents of children enrolled in the Jefferson County, Kentucky school system. The sleep behavior of African-American (n=973) and Caucasian (n=2398) children was analyzed. Median annual income of residential zip codes was used as a proxy for SES.

RESULTS:

Mean age was 4.8+/-1.1 years. Two composite 'sleep behavior scores' were generated related to excessive daytime sleepiness and sleep-related behavior. Children in the lower SES group had significantly more impaired 'sleep behavior scores' than those in the higher SES group, regardless of race or age. African-American children had later bedtimes than Caucasian children with similar rise times, resulting in significantly shorter sleep duration and more excessive daytime sleepiness, independent of SES and age.

CONCLUSIONS:

Cultural variables impact sleep-related behavior in children. Race and SES have independent relationships with sleep behavior. Independent of SES, African-American children sleep less due to later bedtimes. SES does play a role, however, in parentally reported sleep-related behavior problems. Thus, cultural variables such as race and SES are important modifiers of sleep behaviors in children and should be addressed in sleep education programs.

PMID:
15978515
DOI:
10.1016/j.sleep.2005.02.001
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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