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Trajectories and Predictors of Nocturnal Awakenings and Sleep Duration in Infants

Hysing, Mari PhD*; Harvey, Allison G. PhD; Torgersen, Leila PhD; Ystrom, Eivind PhD; Reichborn-Kjennerud, Ted PhD‡,§; Sivertsen, Borge PhD‡,‖,¶


In the article that appeared on page 309 of Volume 35, Issue 5 of Journal of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics , an error occurred in the description of the sleep duration assessment. Instead of asking the mothers: “How many hours does your child sleep per night?” the correct wording of this item should be “How many hours in total does your child sleep per 24-hour period”. Similarly, all referrals to “sleep duration of X hr per night” in the text and tables should be replaced with “sleep duration of XX hr per 24-hour period.”

Journal of Developmental & Behavioral Pediatrics. 35(6):391, July/August 2014.

Journal of Developmental & Behavioral Pediatrics: June 2014 - Volume 35 - Issue 5 - p 309–316
doi: 10.1097/DBP.0000000000000064
Original Article

Objectives: To examine the trajectories of sleep duration and nocturnal awakenings in infants from 6 to 18 months of age and to identify predictors of short sleep duration and nocturnal awakenings.

Methods: Data for this study come from the Norwegian Mother and Child Cohort Study conducted at the Norwegian Institute of Public Health. A total of 55,831 mother reports of child sleep were used to estimate the stability and predictors of awakenings and short sleep.

Results: Nocturnal awakenings were frequent among 6-month-old children. Although there was an overall reduction in both sleep duration and nocturnal awakenings from 6 to 18 months, the chronicity of sleep problems was high and impacted by prior sleep behavior and sleeping arrangements. Bedsharing was an independent and graded predictor of nocturnal awakenings and short sleep duration, also after controlling for prior sleep. Breastfeeding was related to concurrent nocturnal awakening but was not negatively related to later nocturnal awakenings.

Conclusions: Considering the chronicity of nocturnal awakening and its association with bedsharing, our findings support current recommendations of reducing bedsharing to improve sleep among infants.

*Regional Centre for Child and Youth Mental Health and Child Welfare, Uni Health, Uni Research, Bergen, Norway;

Department of Psychology, University of California, Berkeley;

Division of Mental Health, Norwegian Institute of Public Health, Bergen, Norway;

§Institute of Psychiatry, University of Oslo, Oslo, Norway;

Uni Health, Uni Research, Bergen, Norway;

Department of Psychiatry, Helse Fonna HF, Haugesund, Norway.

Address for reprints: Mary Hysing, PhD, Regional Centre for Child and Youth Mental Health and Child Welfare, Uni Health, Uni Research, Krinkelkroken 1, Bergen, Norway 5008; e-mail:

Disclosure: The authors declare no conflict of interest.

The Norwegian Mother and Child Study is supported by the Norwegian Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Education and Research, NIH/NIEHS (contract no NO-ES-75558), NIH/NINDS (grant no. 1 UO1 NS 047537-01), and the Norwegian Research Council/FUGE (grant no. 151918/S10).

Received January , 2014

Accepted March , 2014

© 2014 by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins