Type D personality is associated with sleep problems in adolescents. Results from a population-based cohort study of Swedish adolescents

J Psychosom Res. 2013 Apr;74(4):290-5. doi: 10.1016/j.jpsychores.2012.11.011. Epub 2012 Dec 23.


Objective: Sleep problems are associated with an increased risk of psychiatric and somatic diseases. Type D personality, or the distressed personality, refers to the joint tendency to experience negative emotions and to inhibit self-expression in social interaction. Type D personality is associated with an increased number of health complaints including cardiovascular diseases. The present study investigated whether type D personality was associated with sleep problems among adolescents.

Methods: The study was part of the Survey of Adolescent Life in Västmanland 2008 (SALVe 2008). A total of 5012 adolescents (age 15-18 years old) completed a questionnaire including the type D measurement DS14 and questions on sleep disturbances, sleep hours during school nights, and sleep hours during weekend nights.

Results: Adolescents with a type D personality had an approximately four times increased risk of having sleep disturbances. Moreover, type D personality was associated with sleeping fewer hours.

Conclusion: As adolescence represents a formative period for development it is critical to identify sleep disorders early. The presence of type D personality associated with poor sleep demands attention because sleep problems may be an early stage in the development of later diseases.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Cohort Studies
  • Depression / psychology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Personality / physiology*
  • Sleep / physiology*
  • Sleep Wake Disorders / psychology*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Sweden