For some children and teens with autism spectrum disorder, sleep can sometimes be a struggle. But good sleep is essential to good health and a good quality of life.
“While up to 40% of all children and teens will have sleep problems at some point during childhood, such problems usually lessen with age,” said lead guideline author Dr. Ashura Williams Buckley of the National Institute of Mental Health and a member of American Academy of Neurology, or AAN. “However, for children and teens with autism, sleep problems are more common and more likely to persist.”
To help families, neurologists and other health care providers make treatment decisions, the AAN has issued a new guideline based on careful review of available scientific studies to address four types of sleep problems: refusing to go to bed, stalling, or needing a parent or caregiver present until falling asleep; trouble falling asleep and staying asleep; sleeping