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Factors associated with shorter night-time sleep in toddlers: The Survey of Young Canadians

Christy Costanian, Peri Abdullah, Nita Sawh, Ara Nagapatan, Hala Tamim


OBJECTIVES: Adequate sleep in childhood is important for healthy development. No information exists on the predictors of night-time sleep among toddlers in Canada. The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence of and to identify factors associated with sleeping <11 consecutive hours per night among children aged 1–2 years in Canada.

METHODS: Data from the cross sectional Survey of Young Canadians (SYC) 2010 were used. The biological mother reported on toddlers’ sleep duration at night. Based on cut-off values used in previous studies, shorter night-time sleep was defined as sleeping <11 hours per night. Multivariable logistic regression was conducted to identify the associations between socio-demographic, maternal, sleep and child-related variables with shorter sleep at night.

RESULTS: Analysis of 3675 toddlers revealed that 57% slept <11 hours per night. Results of the regression analysis showed that being from an immigrantfamily was significantly associated with shorter night-time sleep. Being from a higher income household, having a mother aged between 25 and 34 years at the time of the survey, and napping ≥2 hours during the day were significantly related to sleeping ≥11 hours per night. Other socio-demographic, maternal and child-related variables were not associated with night-time sleep.

CONCLUSION: This was the first population-based, nationally representative study to examine factors related to shorter night-time sleep in Canadian toddlers. Socio-demographic factors and nap duration were associated with night-time sleep duration. More adequate early childhood sleep hygiene awareness efforts are recommended, especially in vulnerable populations.


Children; sleep duration; factors; Canada

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