Infectious Disease

Sleep disorders have only a minor effect on symptoms of youth depression

March 22, 2021

1 min read

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Marino does not report any relevant financial information. In the study you will find all relevant financial information from all other authors.

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Sleep disorders had a small but statistically significant impact on depressive symptoms in children and adolescents. This is evident from a systematic review and meta-analysis published in JAMA Network Open.

“Whether treating sleep disorders will reduce depression in children and adolescents is still under discussion.” Cecilia Marino, MD, PhD, of the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Toronto in Canada, and colleagues wrote. “A recent meta-analysis showed a pooled effect size in the small range based on [four randomized clinical trials] of adolescents with mental health problems below the threshold. To the best of our knowledge, there are no similar RCTs in children or in clinical populations. “

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In the current study, Marino and colleagues wanted to investigate the connection between depression and sleep disorders in children and adolescents. They searched six databases and included prospective cohort studies published between 1980 and August 2019 and using estimates, adjusted for baseline depression, of the association between sleep disorders and depression in participants ages 5 to 24 from both outpatient and clinically-based samples a comorbid diagnosis. Insomnia or insomnia included insomnia which was the main measure. Age, gender, and sociodemographic variables served as covariates. The researchers included 22 studies with 28,895 patients in the overall study and 16 studies with 27,073 patients in the meta-analysis.

The results showed a pooled beta coefficient of 0.11 (95% CI, 0.06-0.15) for the association between insomnia and depression. Those with insomnia compared to those without had a pooled OP of 1.5 (95% CI, 1.13-2). According to meta-regression and sensitivity analyzes, the pooled estimates did not appear to differ in any covariate. The researchers reported significant publication bias.

“Although the pooled effect sizes are small, the high prevalence of children and adolescents with insomnia implies the existence of a large cohort of vulnerable individuals who could develop depression,” wrote Marino and colleagues. “Insomnia could be one of the many risk factors to consider in depression prevention programs. Randomized clinical trials targeting sleep disorders in childhood are needed to aid in the planning and evaluation of depression prevention programs. These results must be viewed in connection with the limitations and the overall very low quality of evidence of the included studies. “

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