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date: 17 January 2019

Abstract and Keywords

Sleep is important for children’s physical, cognitive, and social functioning. The most common sleep disorder contributing to inadequate sleep and daytime impairments in pediatric populations is insomnia. There are both biological and behavioral factors that can contribute to insomnia; therefore, understanding sleep processes, how sleep changes throughout development, and which common behaviors influence sleep is important. Measurement of sleep through both objective and subjective measures plays an important role in the identification, diagnosis, and intervention of insomnia. First-line treatment for insomnia includes psychoeducation, healthy sleep practices, and behavioral and cognitive strategies. Children with special needs are at especially high risk for sleep problems, and treatment of insomnia in these populations should aim to minimize sleep disturbances without increasing other comorbid symptoms. Moving forward, healthcare professionals require access to more comprehensive education on pediatric sleep, and greater public awareness of the importance of sleep and health is needed.

Keywords: sleep–wake disorders, childhood, insomnia, pediatric, treatment

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