PURPOSE: Obesity is a nationwide epidemic in adolescents with long-term healthcare consequences. Adolescence is a developmental period where a confluence of factors like pubertal circadian shift, early school start times, social pressures and the prevalence of technological devices lead to decrease in the amount of sleep on school nights. One possible consequence of reduced duration is an increased risk of weight gain.
METHODS: The study was approved by the Institutional Review Board of the school district. After obtaining informed consent, validated questionnaires were utilized to collect data from teen adolescents (aged 14-19 years) from a high school. Only surveys with complete data were retained. Self-reported measures of height and weight were used for BMI calculation, and correlated with both weekday and weekend quantity and of sleep. Regression analysis and statistical trends were derived using Excel and StataSE software.
RESULTS: There were 248 teen surveys that were retained for analysis. There was no evident relationship between BMI and weekday sleep hours for females. However, for males, there appears to be a possible relationship between BMI and sleep duration (negative correlation between weekday sleep du¬ration and obesity r = -0.18, P < 0.0025). Regression analyses revealed short sleep duration (< 8 hours) was significantly associated with obesity after adjustment for a range of potential confounders.
CONCLUSIONS: Short sleep duration is associated with obesity for male teenagers but not in female adolescents. Additional research is needed to understand these sex-related differences.
CLINICAL IMPLICATIONS: Inadequate sleep has important public health implications and future interventions should educate both children and parents concerning the negative consequences with which it is associated.
DISCLOSURE: The following authors have nothing to disclose: Lata Casturi, Radha Rao
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