Sleep timing and quantity in ecological and family context: a nationally representative time-diary study

J Fam Psychol. 2007 Mar;21(1):4-19. doi: 10.1037/0893-3200.21.1.4.


Associations between demographic characteristics, school schedules, activity choices, family functioning, and sleep behaviors were estimated using nationally representative time-diary data from 2,454 children (ages 5.5 to 11.9 years) and adolescents (ages 12.0 to 19.1 years). For weekdays, African American adolescents, Asian children, and those with earlier school start times and longer travel times to school reported fewer sleep hours. More time spent watching television (for children), doing homework (for adolescents), and engaging in religious activities predicted fewer hours, whereas a longer time spent on meals predicted greater hours of weekday sleep. For younger children, greater parental warmth predicted more hours of weekday sleep, whereas for adolescents, stricter household rules were protective. On weekends, African American adolescents and Hispanic children slept less, and there were strong effects of activity choices including time spent on television, computer and videogames, sports, religious activities, socializing, and employment. In accounting for age-related decreases in sleep hours from childhood to adolescence, earlier school start times, greater hours of homework, greater paid employment, less time spent on meals, and fewer household rules were all significant mediators.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adolescent Behavior / psychology
  • Adult
  • Age Distribution
  • Child
  • Child Behavior / psychology
  • Child, Preschool
  • Employment / psychology
  • Employment / statistics & numerical data
  • Ethnicity / psychology
  • Family / psychology*
  • Family Relations
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Motor Activity / physiology
  • Parenting / psychology
  • Schools
  • Self Disclosure*
  • Sleep / physiology*
  • Social Behavior
  • Time Factors
  • United States