Parents often need after-hours child sleep advice

October 21, 2012

Many parents have questions about their child's sleep problems, primarily after 6 p.m. when professional assistance is not readily available, according to an abstract presented Oct. 21 at the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) National Conference and Exhibition in New Orleans.

The abstract, "An iPhone Application for Infant and Toddler Sleep: Characteristics and Concerns of Users," reviewed information from nearly 8,000 users of a free iPhone app designed to aid sleep in young children. Of those users, 365 (4.6 percent of 8,000 users) submitted a question to an "Ask the Expert" feature over a three-month period. The app users were typically mothers (69 percent) with an average age of 28. Their children were primarily infants (68 percent of children were age 3 to 11 months), followed by toddlers (2- percent of children were age 12 to 36 months) and (12 percent were age 0-2 months).

The most frequent questions involved night wakings (22.7 percent), sleep problems (22.2 percent) and general sleep (21.9 percent). Less frequently, questions related to napping (15.3 percent), (13.4 percent) and sleep safety (4.4 percent). Questions were most frequently submitted between midnight and 6 a.m. (37 percent) and 6 p.m. and midnight (22 percent).

"Our results found that the most common questions that parents ask pertain to and night waking," said study author Jodi A. Mindell, Ph.D. "These questions are most often submitted in the evening and even overnight – times when professional help is typically not available."

"Research has shown that behaviorally based interventions are highly effective for infant and toddler , and yet they do require with a trained professional," Mindell said. "As a result many children go untreated."

While the application provides widespread access to some assistance for families, the study supports the need for greater accessibility to health, and in particular, sleep-related information.

Explore further: Sleep disruption for breastfed babies is temporary

Related Stories

Sleep disruption for breastfed babies is temporary

October 17, 2011

While breastfed babies initially awaken more during the night for feedings, their sleep patterns -- falling asleep, staying asleep and total sleep time -- stabilize in later infancy and become comparable to non-breastfed ...

Recommended for you

Babies' slow brain waves could predict problems

May 25, 2017

The brain waves of healthy newborns – which appear more abnormal than those of severe stroke victims – could be used to accurately predict which babies will have neurodevelopmental disorders.

Home strep test could save time and money

May 11, 2017

Most children who visit a doctor because they have a sore throat are tested for Streptococcus ("strep throat"), a contagious condition that can cause serious complications if not treated. A new study led by MIT and Beth Israel ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.