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Sleep. 2017 Jan 1;40(1). doi: 10.1093/sleep/zsw004.

Association Between Short Sleep Duration and Risk Behavior Factors in Middle School Students.

Owens J1,2, Wang G2,3,4, Lewin D2, Skora E2,5, Baylor A2,6.

Author information

Department of Neurology, Boston Children's Hospital, Boston, MA.
Department of Pulmonary and Sleep Medicine, Children's National Health System, Washington, DC.
Department of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics, Pediatric Translational Medicine Institute, Shanghai Children's Medical Center, Shanghai, China.
School of Psychology and Cognitive Science, East China Normal University, Shanghai, China.
School of Human Ecology, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, WI.
Department of Psychology, Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, VA.


Study Objectives:

To examine the association between self-reported sleep duration (SD) and peer/individual factors predictive of risky behaviors (risk behavior factors) in a large socioeconomically diverse school-based sample of early adolescents.

Design, Setting, and Participants:

Survey data collected from 10718 and 11240 eighth-grade students in 2010 and 2012, respectively, were analyzed.



Measurements and Results:

Self-reported school night SD was grouped as ≤4 hours, 5 hours, 6 hours, 7 hours, 8 hours, 9 hours, and ≥10 hours. Scores on 10 peer/individual risk behavior factor scales were dichotomized according to national eigth-grade cut points. The percentage of students reporting an "optimal" SD of 9 hours was 14.8% and 15.6% in 2010 and 2012, respectively; 45.6% and 46.1% reported <7 hours. Adjusted for covariates of gender, race, and SES, multilevel logistic regression results showed that odds ratios (ORs) for 9 of 10 risk factor scales increased with SD <7 hours, with a dose-response effect for each hour less sleep compared to an SD of 9 hours. For example, ORs for students sleeping <7 hours ranged from 1.3 (early initiation of antisocial behavior) to 1.8 (early initiation of drug use). The risk factor scale ORs for <5 hours SD ranged from 3.0 (sensation seeking) to 6.4 (gang involvement).


Middle school students are at high risk of insufficient sleep; in particular, an SD <7 hours is associated with increased risk behavior factors.


adolescent sleep; risk behavior.; sleep duration

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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