Relationship between child sleep disturbances and maternal sleep, mood, and parenting stress: A pilot study

Division of Pulmonary Medicine, Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, University of Philadelphia, PA 19104, USA.
Journal of Family Psychology (Impact Factor: 1.89). 04/2007; 21(1):67-73. DOI: 10.1037/0893-3200.21.1.67
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Although sleep disturbances in children are common, little is known about the relationship between children's sleep disruptions and maternal sleep and daytime functioning. Forty-seven mothers completed measures of sleep, depression, parenting stress, fatigue, and sleepiness. Significant differences in maternal mood and parenting stress were found between mothers of children with and without significant sleep disturbances. Regression analyses showed that the quality of the children's sleep significantly predicted the quality of maternal sleep. In addition, maternal sleep quality was a significant predictor of maternal mood, stress, and fatigue. Results from this pilot study support the need for future research examining the relationship between child sleep disturbances and maternal daytime functioning, and they highlight the importance of screening for and treating pediatric sleep disruptions.

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    • "As any parent will readily attest, caring for young children can involve high levels of stress (Crnic, Gaze, & Hoffman, 2005), daily hassles (Crnic & Booth, 1991), and disrupted sleep (Meltzer & Mindell, 2007). These, in turn, have been known to predict depressed parental mood (Meltzer & Mindell, 2007), negative parent–child interactions (Crnic et al., 2005), and child behavioural problems (Gutermuth-Anthony et al., 2005). Perhaps for these very reasons, birth and fertility rates have continuously plummeted since the 1950s around the globe. "
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    ABSTRACT: Caring for children is a known psychosocial stressor; however, its effects on psychological functioning may have substantial cross-cultural variance. We explored relationships between family size and a variety of psychological outcomes among Orthodox Jews in four separate studies: (1) an international treatment-seeking sample (n = 82), (2) a community sample from Canada (n = 226), (3) an out-patient clinical sample from greater New York (n = 82), and (4) a large dyadic sample of Israeli couples (n = 789). Surprisingly, results suggested that family size was not associated with greater stress, anxiety, depression, global functioning, family functioning, family communication, family satisfaction, or even parenting stress. It is possible that the high religious value placed on family life as well as structural adaptions in families buffer against potential stressors associated with child rearing, and further research on these potential effects is warranted.
    Mental Health Religion & Culture 03/2015; 18(3). DOI:10.1080/13674676.2015.1042851
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    • "Research has also linked sleep problems in children to environments characterized by parental psychopathology and high family stress [11] [12] [13]. For example, Warren and colleagues [14] found that anxious mothers were more overly involved in their children's bedtime routines compared to non-anxious mothers. "
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    ABSTRACT: Study objectives Using a multi-method design, this study examined the construct validity of the Parent-Child Sleep Interactions Scale (PSIS; Alfano et al., 2013), which measures sleep-related parenting behaviors and interactions that contribute to preschoolers’ sleep problems. Methods Participants included a community sample of 155 preschoolers (ages 3-5 years; 51.6% female). Primary caregivers completed the PSIS. Parenting styles and behaviors were assessed with laboratory observations and parent-report. Parent and child psychopathology and family life stress were assessed with clinical interviews and parent-report. Results Bivariate correlations revealed significant associations between the PSIS and a number of variables, including lower observed parental support and quality of instruction; higher observed parental intrusiveness; authoritative, authoritarian, and permissive parenting styles; current maternal depressive and/or anxiety disorders and depressive symptomatology; increased stressful life events; lower marital satisfaction; higher child depressive, anxiety, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), and oppositional defiant disorder (ODD) symptoms. Patterns of association varied based on the specific PSIS scale. Conclusions The PSIS demonstrates meaningful associations with parenting, maternal psychopathology, family stress, and child psychopathology and functioning. Findings suggest that the PSIS is a valid measure for assessing sleep-related parent/child behaviors and interactions among preschoolers, suited to real world settings.
    Sleep Medicine 08/2014; 15(8). DOI:10.1016/j.sleep.2014.04.002 · 3.15 Impact Factor
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    • "These rates demonstrate the ubiquitous nature of night-wakings in adults caring for young children and the need to explore the effects of sleep fragmentation of this nature. Correlative studies have associated such awakenings with reduced neurobehavioral performance, as well as with more negative mood and depressive symptoms in mothers of young children [2] [29] [30]. To our knowledge, no experimental studies have been conducted to investigate the cognitive and emotional consequences of this type of sleep disruption. "
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    ABSTRACT: Objective Despite their high prevalence in daily life, repeated night-wakings and their cognitive and emotional consequences have received less research attention compared to other types of sleep disturbances. Our aim was to compare experimentally the effects of one night of induced infrequent night-wakings (of ∼15 min, each requiring a purposeful response) and sleep restriction on sustained attention and mood in young adults. Methods In a within-between subjects counterbalanced design, 61 healthy adults (40 females; aged 20–29 years) underwent home assessments of sustained attention and self-reported mood at two times: after a normal (control) sleep night, and after a night of either sleep restriction (4 h in bed) or induced night-wakings (four prolonged awakenings across 8 h in bed). Sleep was monitored using actigraphy and sleep diaries. Sustained attention was assessed using an online continuous performance test (OCPT), and mood was reported online using the Profile of Mood States (POMS). Results Actigraphic data revealed good compliance with experimental sleep requirements. Induced night-wakings and sleep restriction both resulted in more OCPT omission and commission errors, and in increased depression, fatigue and confusion levels and reduced vigor compared to the normal sleep night. Moreover, there were no significant differences between the consequences of induced awakenings and sleep restriction. Conclusions Our pilot study indicates that, similar to sleep restriction, one night of life-like repeated night-wakings negatively affects mood and sustained attention.
    Sleep Medicine 07/2014; 15(7). DOI:10.1016/j.sleep.2014.03.016 · 3.15 Impact Factor
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