Nonpharmacological interventions for sleep disorders in children

Brett R. Kuhn, Margaret T. Floress

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

9 Scopus citations


INTRODUCTION An estimated 20-30% of children will experience sleep problems during the first three years of life (1-4). Although parents and professionals wish that sleep problems would simply “go away” as the child matures, research suggests they can be highly persistent, lasting even into adulthood (5-8). Although certain pediatric sleep disorders clearly demand medical attention (e.g., obstructive sleep apnea, narcolepsy), the majority call for clinical assessment and intervention skills that behavioral specialists are well-suited to provide. Principles of learning (e.g., reinforcement, extinction, shaping, fading, stimulus control) that have been shown successful in reducing daytime behavior problems can be highly effective in alleviating many forms of pediatric sleep disturbance (9). The purpose of this article is to review nonpharmacological interventions for pediatric sleep disturbance; namely, bedtime resistance and night waking, circadian rhythm disorders, and the parasomnias. We then review briefly a rapidly emerging literature on behavioral interventions to promote adherence with continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) for sleeprelated breathing disorders.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationSleep and Psychiatric Disorders in Children and Adolescents
PublisherTaylor and Francis
Number of pages18
ISBN (Electronic)9781420048087
ISBN (Print)1420048074, 9781420048070
StatePublished - Jan 1 2008

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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