Special Issue "Sleep in Children"

A special issue of International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health (ISSN 1660-4601). This special issue belongs to the section "Children's Health".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 28 February 2022.

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Dr. Karen Spruyt
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
INSERM, School of Medicine, University Claude Bernard Lyon 1, 69008 Lyon, France
Interests: developmental neuropsychology; sleep disorders; neuroscience; statistics
Prof. Dr. Patricio Peirano
E-Mail Website1 Website2
Assistant Guest Editor
Sleep Laboratory, Institute of Nutrition and Food Technology (INTA), University of Chile, Macul, Santiago 7830489, Chile
Interests: sleep development throughout the lifespan; sleep/nutrition interaction; sleep medicine; sleep and cognitive performance; automated processing of sleep patterns

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

We are pleased to invite you to contribute to this Special Issue focusing on a child’s sleep. A young child engages in sleeping activities more than in any other activity during the 24-hour cycle. However, what constitutes sleep behavior and sleep patterns suitable for a child’s development remain open questions.

Many disorders occur in both children and adults, and may have similar features, but some sleep behaviors might be uniquely disturbed during childhood.  Examples of these pediatric sleep disorders are cot death, inappropriate sleep transition schedules or certain parasomnias that are more prevalent in childhood years. At the same time, studies are progressively showing that in our 21st century society, children are not obtaining the sleep appropriate for their stages of development. Nonetheless, the scientific community unraveling the role of sleep in a child’s development remains challenged. That is, a growing body of studies discusses the benefits of sleep and the downsides of poor sleep, but important questions worthy of our consideration remain unanswered; e.g., What are the age-related differences in sleep physiology? What are the age-related differences in sleep behaviors? What is normal versus abnormal across child development? What are culturally adept caregiver-child sleep interactions? Which assessment, treatment and management of sleep disorders is best tailored to the needs of a developing child?

In addition, to date, a growing body of studies suggest that sleep-related pathology may cause, mimic, or exacerbate daytime symptomatology across development. Vividly investigated is the impact of poor sleep on cognitive development and school performance, with reported effect sizes ranging from 0.05 to 0.35 denoting the unignorable association. Other developmental domains may have been overshadowed by this interest in learning and memory capacity during childhood, but are equally relevant to a child’s growth.

The aim of this Special Issue is, therefore, to increase our understanding of the role of sleep in children. Studies investigating the outcomes of poor sleep, the impact of poor health on a child’s sleep, as well as environmental influences (e.g., family, sleep environment) on a child’s sleep are solicited. Similarly, studies on the treatment or management of pediatric sleep disorders, or new devices and apps to track or monitor their sleep are welcomed.

This Special Issue invites manuscripts reporting original research and reviews, investigating the sleep of children—newborns, infants, toddlers, school-aged children and adolescents.

Prof. Dr. Karen Spruyt
Prof. Dr. Patricio Peirano
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2300 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • polysomnography
  • sleep epidemiology
  • sleep behaviors
  • child development
  • sleep tool
  • sleep treatment
  • sleep health
  • cognition
  • socio-emotional behavior
  • sleep disorders

Published Papers (1 paper)

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The Pathways Linking to Sleep Habits among Children and Adolescents: A Complete Survey at Setagaya-ku, Tokyo
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(12), 6309; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18126309 - 10 Jun 2021
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It has been noted that Japanese children sleep the least in the world, and this has become a major social issue. This study examined the pathways linked to sleep habits (SH) among children and adolescents. A questionnaire-based survey was conducted in March 2019 [...] Read more.
It has been noted that Japanese children sleep the least in the world, and this has become a major social issue. This study examined the pathways linked to sleep habits (SH) among children and adolescents. A questionnaire-based survey was conducted in March 2019 on children and their parents at all 63 public elementary and 29 public junior high schools in Setagaya-ku, Tokyo. For the analysis, 22,385 pairs of children–parent responses (valid response rate: 68.8%) with no missing data were used. This survey collected data on SH, physical activity (PA), screen time (ST) for the child, and lifestyle and neighborhood social capital (NSC) for the parents. Moreover, the pathways linking ‘NSC’ → ‘parental lifestyle’ → ‘child’s PA/ST’ →‘child’s SH’ were examined through structural equation modeling. The results indicated that children’s SH were affected by their PA and ST and influenced by the lifestyle of their parents and the NSC that surrounds them. Thus, we concluded that it is necessary to provide direct interventions and take additional measures with regard to parent lifestyle and their NSC to solve persistent sleep problems in children. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sleep in Children)
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