Insufficient Sleep May Affect Your Child’s Performance – Says Study

Is your child having behavioral issues? Does he behave all cranky most of the times? Is your child suffering from cognitive issues? Is s/he having mood swings? Or perhaps, your child is going through bad and poor academic performance?

Have you ever tried to know the answer behind all these questions? Did you ever research what could be the cause behind your child’s such behavior when apparently, s/he has no issues at all? If you haven’t started researching yet, then this is the time that you should start doing.

Because perhaps, your child is suffering from sleep-deprivation. In the following article, we are going to discuss how sleep-deprivation affects the child’s overall performance. From cognitive behavior to academic performance. Also, know if there’s any link between lack of focus and memory retention with the sleep deprivation.

There are two states of sleep:

  • NREM (Non-Rapid Eye Movement): Such a sleep is also known as ‘quite sleep.’ In this state of sleep, the supply of the blood to the muscles is increased whereas energy gets restored. Moreover, the growth of tissue and the repairing also occurs at this stage of sleep. And some of the hormones which are important for growth and development are released as well during the process.
  • REM (Rapid Eye Movement): This state of sleep is also called ‘active sleep’. In this state, mostly dreams happen and the brains remain active. There’s irregularity in the heart-rate and breathing while bodies remain immobile.

Newborns spend half of the time between both states of sleep. 50 percent in NREM while the other 50 percent in REM.

Effects of Sleep Deprivation on Children

A study by the Netherlands Institute for Neuroscience declared the results of the sleep deprivation in children. The researcher, named Rebecca G.Astill who conducted this research, collected the data from at least 86 studies which had more than 35,000 children between the ages of 5 to 12. As per the research of Astill, children who were sleep deprived or didn’t get adequate sleep time, such children showed poor performance in their schools or academics as well as had difficulty in cognitive functioning.

The Harvard’s Gazette also said that the children who don’t get the adequate amount of sleep during the age of 3 and 7 are more vulnerable to face lack of focusing issues along with zero emotional self-control which consequently can affect their relationship with their peers.

What areas can get affected because of sleep deprivation?

Sleep deprivation can cause a number of issues in your child. As per the online report of ‘Journal of Academic Pediatrics’, this may cause:

  • Unable to remain attentive.
  • Facing issues with the working memory.
  • Getting poorer with the reasoning.
  • Unable to perform well in problem-solving tasks.

Elsie Taveras, professor of pediatrics at Harvard Medical College, reported having said that inadequate amount of sleep during the early ages of children’s school period can leave some bad consequences on their behavior- as in the risks get higher by the age of 7 in children where their neurobehavioral functionality starts getting affected.

The report also revealed that some of the factors which can likely be the cause of sleep deprivation are exposing the children to the TV just before the bedtime or another cause could be children living in homes with limited incomes- as such children also spend less time sleeping.

Taveras also added that some of the existing studies support the idea that poor, insufficient sleep may also lead both the child and the mother towards some other health issues such as obesity. Nevertheless, the long-term effects of sleep deprivation are yet to be determined. Since the study has only shown the results of sleep inadequacy in the children only.


  • https://www.academicpedsjnl.net/article/S1876-2859(17)30047-5/abstract
  • https://news.harvard.edu/gazette/story/2017/03/study-flags-later-risks-for-sleep-deprived-kids/
  • https://www.goodtherapy.org/blog/effects-of-sleep-deprivation-on-children-1120121



Areeba Hussain

Areeba is an independent medical and healthcare writer. For the last three years, she is writing for Tophealthjournal. Her prime areas of interest are diseases, medicine, treatments, and alternative therapies. Twitter @Areeba94789300

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Adblock Detected

Please consider supporting us by disabling your ad blocker