In the JournalsPerspective

Teaching, mimicking, anticipating sleep outcomes improves sleep hygiene in teens

Interventions based on the Theory of Planned Behavior and the Health Action Process Approach that included primers on sleep medicine, reconstructed sleeping environments and outlined sleeping habits, improved sleep hygiene in teenagers, according to findings recently published in Sleep.

“The [Theory of Planned Behavior] and the [Health Action Process Approach] are commonly used to inform interventions designed to promote changes in various behaviors across different populations. Furthermore, the two models have been previously combined to help understand sleep hygiene among adolescents,” Chung-Ying Lin, PhD and occupational therapist with the department of rehabilitation sciences at Hong Kong Polytechnic University, and colleagues wrote.

“However, almost no studies to date have explored whether the Theory of Planned Behavior and the Health Action Process Approach can inform interventions designed to change sleep hygiene behaviors, sleep quality, or sleep patterns,” they added.

Researchers assigned 1,425 teenagers in Iran to participate in an intervention where they received information about sleep’s health consequences; reconstructed their physical sleeping environment; received social support; created plans that indicated where, when and why they would sleep; identified barriers to sleep and monitored sleeping habits. Another 1,416 teenagers received no intervention.

Woman Sleeping 
“[Our] findings are significant because they suggest how to tackle the serious consequences of poor sleep, Chung-Ying Lin, PhD and occupational therapist with the department of rehabilitation sciences at Hong Kong Polytechnic University, and colleagues wrote. Photo source: Shutterstock.

Lin and colleagues found Adolescent Sleep Hygiene scores improved in the intervention group at 1 month (coefficient = 0.16; 95% CI, 0.12-0.2) and at 6 months (coefficient 0.19; 95% CI, 0.15-0.23) vs. the control group. Those who received the intervention also had better General Health Questionnaire and Pediatric Quality of Life scores.

“Adolescents commonly have sleep problems that are often caused by poor sleep hygiene (eg, using electronic devices before sleep). Several intervention programs have been designed to tackle such problems; however, they lack a solid theoretical background and so may fall short of promise,” Lin and colleagues wrote. “[Our] findings are significant because they suggest how to tackle the serious consequences of poor sleep.” – by Janel Miller

Disclosures: The authors report no relevant financial disclosures.

 

Interventions based on the Theory of Planned Behavior and the Health Action Process Approach that included primers on sleep medicine, reconstructed sleeping environments and outlined sleeping habits, improved sleep hygiene in teenagers, according to findings recently published in Sleep.

“The [Theory of Planned Behavior] and the [Health Action Process Approach] are commonly used to inform interventions designed to promote changes in various behaviors across different populations. Furthermore, the two models have been previously combined to help understand sleep hygiene among adolescents,” Chung-Ying Lin, PhD and occupational therapist with the department of rehabilitation sciences at Hong Kong Polytechnic University, and colleagues wrote.

“However, almost no studies to date have explored whether the Theory of Planned Behavior and the Health Action Process Approach can inform interventions designed to change sleep hygiene behaviors, sleep quality, or sleep patterns,” they added.

Researchers assigned 1,425 teenagers in Iran to participate in an intervention where they received information about sleep’s health consequences; reconstructed their physical sleeping environment; received social support; created plans that indicated where, when and why they would sleep; identified barriers to sleep and monitored sleeping habits. Another 1,416 teenagers received no intervention.

Woman Sleeping 
“[Our] findings are significant because they suggest how to tackle the serious consequences of poor sleep, Chung-Ying Lin, PhD and occupational therapist with the department of rehabilitation sciences at Hong Kong Polytechnic University, and colleagues wrote. Photo source: Shutterstock.

Lin and colleagues found Adolescent Sleep Hygiene scores improved in the intervention group at 1 month (coefficient = 0.16; 95% CI, 0.12-0.2) and at 6 months (coefficient 0.19; 95% CI, 0.15-0.23) vs. the control group. Those who received the intervention also had better General Health Questionnaire and Pediatric Quality of Life scores.

“Adolescents commonly have sleep problems that are often caused by poor sleep hygiene (eg, using electronic devices before sleep). Several intervention programs have been designed to tackle such problems; however, they lack a solid theoretical background and so may fall short of promise,” Lin and colleagues wrote. “[Our] findings are significant because they suggest how to tackle the serious consequences of poor sleep.” – by Janel Miller

Disclosures: The authors report no relevant financial disclosures.

 

    Perspective
    Nathaniel F. Watson

    Nathaniel F. Watson

    The sleep IQ of adolescents in today’s society is low, with serious consequences for their health and well-being. This study shows that structured educational programs can change adolescent perceptions and behaviors around sleep with improvements to sleep quality and duration. Broad implementation of programs such as these have far reaching public health implications for adolescents.

    Short sleep is associated with cardiovascular disease, mental health issues, obesity, diabetes and increased risk of accidents. Teaching the youth of the country how to get proper sleep has the potential to reduce the incidence of these diseases long term. This material should be incorporated into middle and high school health education programs across the country.

    • Nathaniel F. Watson, MD, MSc
    • Director, Harborview Sleep Clinic
      Co-director, University of Washington Medicine Sleep Center
      Past-president, American Academy of Sleep Medicine and American Board of Sleep Medicine

    Disclosures: Healio Family Medicine was unable to determine Watson's relevant financial disclosures prior to publication.