Parental sleep concerns in autism spectrum disorders: variations from childhood to adolescence

J Autism Dev Disord. 2012 Apr;42(4):531-8. doi: 10.1007/s10803-011-1270-5.


Sleep problems of adolescents and older children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) were compared to toddlers and young children in 1,859 children. Sleep was measured with the Children's Sleep Habits Questionnaire. Total sleep problems were significant across all age groups, however the factors contributing to these problems differed. Adolescents and older children had more problems with delayed sleep onset, shorter sleep duration, and daytime sleepiness; while younger children had more bedtime resistance, sleep anxiety, parasomnias, and night wakings. The results suggest that sleep problems persist through adolescence in ASD with differences in types of problems experienced and emphasize the need for clinicians to address sleep behaviors not only in young children with ASD but throughout the age span.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Age Factors
  • Child
  • Child Development Disorders, Pervasive / complications*
  • Child, Preschool
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Parents
  • Sleep
  • Sleep Wake Disorders / complications*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires