3 Aug 2023

It’s not really news to anyone that tiredness can lead to crankiness. However, new research shows that a good night’s sleep may be especially important in reducing ADHD symptoms in children.

The study

Researchers gathered information from nearly 1000 children with ADHD and their parents about their sleep habits and feelings.

The findings

Children with ADHD who had no sleep problems during the lockdown tended to have better moods and behaviours during the day.

Those who had difficulty falling asleep or woke up frequently at night showed more signs of being upset or behaving differently during the day.

The researchers also discovered that some sleep problems had a bigger impact on children’s feelings and actions than others.

Kids who had nightmares or felt sleepy during the day seemed to be more worried or sad.

Sleep issues like sleepwalking didn’t seem to have much effect on their emotions or behavior.

What the findings mean for kids with ADHD

These findings highlight the importance of sleep for children with ADHD. When they can sleep well, they may feel happier and behave better. It’s essential for parents and doctors to help kids with ADHD get good sleep to support their overall well-being and functioning.


Maria Grazia Melegari, Raffaele Ferri, Martina Giallonardo, Renato Donfrancesco, Oliviero Bruni, Changes in sleep duration and disturbances during Covid-19 lockdown and internalizing-externalizing behaviors in children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorders, Sleep Medicine, Volume 101, 2023, Pages 183-189, ISSN 1389-9457.