New Study Shows Children with ADHD Get Less Sleep
Children with ADHD sleep less overall and have less REM (Rapid Eye Movement) sleep than children without ADHD, possibly exacerbating the symptoms of ADHD, a recent study published in the March 1, 2009 issue of SLEEP magazine reported.
According to the study, children with ADHD slept an average of 33 minutes less and had 16 minutes less of REM sleep than children without ADHD. Even so, lead researcher, Reut Gruber, PhD, does not believe that sleep is the cause of ADHD.
The study showed, according to the researchers that "ADHD children may suffer from an intrinsic sleep problem that could be related to the underlying pathophysiology of the disorder."
Sleep problems, reported by between 25% and 50% of children and adolescents with ADHD, can cause daytime sleepiness, neurobehavioral impairment, affect daytime learning and can develop into ADHD symptoms.
The information from this study needs to be further researched but the authors of the study believe, if the findings are confirmed, that "therapeutic approaches for optimizing and individualizing children's sleep regimes" can be developed.
If children with ADHD are chronically sleep deprived and have abnormal REM sleep, the information can be used to help develop treatment plans and may explain some of the deficits in attention and behavior.
More information on sleep and ADHD:
"Underlying Sleep Problem Linked to Attention-deficit/hyperactivity Disorder in Children", 2009, Mar 2, ScienceDaily