The Indian Journal of Pediatrics

, Volume 80, Issue 6, pp 492–498

Sleep Problems in Children: A Guide for Primary Care Physicians

General Practitioners’ Column

DOI: 10.1007/s12098-012-0960-0

Cite this article as:
Bharti, B., Mehta, A. & Malhi, P. Indian J Pediatr (2013) 80: 492. doi:10.1007/s12098-012-0960-0


Sleep problems are commonly encountered in children with a prevalence of 20–42 %. Sleep problem usually entails a sleep pattern that is unsatisfactory or cause of concern to the parent, child or physician. Children present to primary care physicians or pediatricians with mainly three types of sleep related problems—first group has disorders of initiating and maintaining sleep (dyssomnias); second category (hypersomnias) is characterized by excessive sleepiness and third section represents abnormal activity or behavior during sleep, also classified as parasomnias. Evaluation of a child with sleep problem involves a comprehensive sleep history followed by detailed medical, developmental and behavioral history. One simple sleep screening tool used for evaluation of sleep in children—BEARS (B is bed time problems, E is excessive day time sleepiness, A is awakenings during the night, R is regularity as well as duration of sleep, and S is snoring) has been discussed. This article discusses common sleep problems observed in different age groups starting right from neonatal to the adolescent period followed by management strategies to optimize outcome of sleep in children.


Sleep Sleep disorders Children 

Copyright information

© Dr. K C Chaudhuri Foundation 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PediatricsAdvanced Pediatric Centre, Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and ResearchChandigarhIndia

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