Longitudinal relations between maternal depressive symptoms and child sleep problems: The role of parasympathetic nervous system reactivity

Peggy S. Keller, Chrystyna D. Kouros, Stephen A. Erath, Ronald E. Dahl, Mona El-Sheikh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background We examined maternal depressive symptoms (MDS) as longitudinal predictors of actigraphy-measured sleep; children's respiratory sinus arrhythmia (RSA) was tested as a moderator of these relations. Method A total of 271 children (145 boys and 126 girls) participated in a three-wave study (M age at T1 = 9.38 years), with a 1-year lag between waves. Children wore actigraphs to derive sleep parameters. RSA reactivity was assessed during a social stress test. Results Contrary to hypotheses, MDS were related to less sleep over time for children exhibiting greater RSA withdrawal. Consistent with hypotheses, MDS were related longitudinally to decreased sleep activity for children exhibiting less RSA withdrawal. Conclusions Findings illustrate the importance of maternal influences and physiological regulation as predictors of children's sleep.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)172-179
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry and Allied Disciplines
Volume55
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 2014

Keywords

  • Maternal depression
  • autonomic
  • children
  • parasympathetic
  • sleep

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Longitudinal relations between maternal depressive symptoms and child sleep problems: The role of parasympathetic nervous system reactivity'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this