By Deborah Williams
Parents of children with problems in school may have checked everything that they can think of to improve things—including making sure that their child gets an adequate amount of sleep. However, they might not be getting an accurate picture of how much sleep their child actually receives if traditional measures are used.
A recent article, “Excessive Sleepiness May Be Cause of Learning, Attention and School Problems,” on the Science Daily website suggests that excessive sleepiness may be the reason that some children have problems learning, paying attention, or thriving in the school environment. Researchers from Penn State found that the parents of children who suffered from excessive daytime sleepiness (EDS) “were more likely to experience learning, attention/hyperactivity and conduct problems than children without EDS.” This was found even when the children in this study showed no signs of reduced sleep time or sleep apnea when traditional sleep measurements were used.
The factors that contribute to EDS include “obesity, symptoms of inattention, depression and anxiety, asthma and parent-reported trouble falling asleep.” So, parents and teachers should pay attention to these indicators in children since EDS may be the underlying cause of problems in school for many children.