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Sleep and Sleep Disorders in Children

Sleep and Sleep Disorders in Children Overview

It is very common for children to have problems sleeping. In fact, researchers estimate that between one-quarter and one-half of all 1-5 year olds develop some form of sleep problem. These problems are most commonly described as dyssomnias, related to "bedtime resistance," "delayed sleep onset," or "night walking." These are basically disorders that can be characterized by a disturbance in the amount, quality, or timing of sleep. These problems are usually transient and resolve; however, it is well established that if symptoms persist, they can develop into a problem which may require an intervention to reverse the trends. It is best to divide sleep disorders into those that are physiologically based, such as obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), narcolepsy, and restless legs syndrome (RLS), and those that are behaviorally based.

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