Characterization and Factors Associated with Sleep Quality in Adolescents with Bipolar I Disorder

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Sleep disturbance is an early marker for bipolar disorder (BD) onset in youth. We characterized sleep quality in adolescents experiencing mania within the last 6-12 months. We examined the association between mood and sleep in 27 adolescents with BD and 24 matched healthy controls (HC). Subjects were assessed by parent and teen report of sleep, a semi-structured clinical interview, the Young Mania Rating Scale (YMRS), and the Childhood Depression Rating Scale (CDRS-R). Average BD youth YMRS (mean 20.3 ± 7.3) and CDRS-R (mean 42.4 ± 14.1) scores indicated they were still ill at time of assessment. Compared to HCs, adolescents with BD have distinct patterns of prolonged sleep onset latency, frequent nighttime awakenings, and increased total time awake. Mood symptoms, specifically excessive guilt, self-injurious behavior, and worsening evening mood, interfered with sleep. Further studies are needed to determine whether early regulation of sleep would improve long-term outcome in BD youth.

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The authors would like to thank Melissa Pease, Erica Weitz, Elizabeth Adams, and Tenah Acquaye for their assistance with recruiting and running participants, and Allison Libby for help with data entry.

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Correspondence to Manpreet K. Singh.

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Roybal, D.J., Chang, K.D., Chen, M.C. et al. Characterization and Factors Associated with Sleep Quality in Adolescents with Bipolar I Disorder. Child Psychiatry Hum Dev 42, 724–740 (2011).

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  • Bipolar disorder
  • Adolescents
  • Sleep
  • Mood
  • Parent–child report