Classification of young children's sleep problems: A pilot study

Erika E. Gaylor, Beth L. Goodlin-Jones, Thomas F. Anders

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

66 Scopus citations


Objectives: This study examines videotaped sleep in infancy in an attempt to predict the development of disturbed sleep during toddlerhood. In addition, a tentative classification scheme that quantifies night waking and sleep onset problems in young children is proposed. Method: The sleep patterns of 33 children were assessed at two points in time. At 12 months of age (time 1), sleep was videotaped on two consecutive nights. A self-soothing/signaling index for 12-month-olds was constructed. At time 2 (mean age = 39 months), a follow-up telephone interview assessed current sleep patterns and the presence or absence of sleep problems. Results: The data suggest that the self-soothing/signaling index obtained at 12 months of age predicts night waking approximately 2 years later. Conclusions: The preliminary classification scheme for night waking and sleep onset problems in young children warrants further study. Night waking in toddlers might be predictable from sleep behaviors at 1 year of age.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)61-67
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2001


  • Classification
  • Sleep disorders
  • Young children

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology


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