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J Child Psychol Psychiatry. 1983 Oct;24(4):587-600.

Sleep patterns in children of superior intelligence.


To examine the relationship between superior intellectual functioning and physiological patterns and events during sleep, male children (8-12 years old) of superior (mean IQ: 133.3) and average (means IQ: 111.0) intelligence were recorded for five consecutive nights using standard electrographic measures. Compared to normal controls, superior IQ subjects had greater amounts of TST, stage 2, stage 3, total NREM sleep, a longer average NREM cycle length and significantly less average REM density. In addition, significant negative relationships were obtained between full-scale IQ and REM density, and between verbal IQ and REM density. The results suggest that patterns and amounts of sleep stages in superior IQ children do not differ in any dramatic fashion from those of children with average IQ. However, the negative correlations between IQ measures and eye movement density during REM sleep are consonant with previous notions relating eye movement density to waking information processing strategies and suggest a carry-over of such strategies from wakefulness to sleep.

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