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Title: Alterations in cortisol profiles among mothers of children with ASD related to poor child sleep quality
Authors: Bin Eid, Wasmiah
Lim, Mengyu
Gabrieli, Giulio
Kölbel, Melanie
Halstead, Elizabeth
Esposito, Gianluca
Dimitrou, Dagmara
Keywords: Social sciences
Social sciences::Psychology
Issue Date: 2022
Source: Bin Eid, W., Lim, M., Gabrieli, G., Kölbel, M., Halstead, E., Esposito, G. & Dimitrou, D. (2022). Alterations in cortisol profiles among mothers of children with ASD related to poor child sleep quality. Healthcare, 10(4).
Journal: Healthcare 
Abstract: Caregivers of children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) experience poorer sleep, but studies have not yet used objective measures to investigate how child and caregiver sleep affect each other. In this study, 29 mothers and their child with ASD aged between 6 and 16 years were recruited. Questionnaires measuring child autism, maternal depression, and maternal and child sleep quality were administered. Cortisol salivary samples were also obtained from the mothers over the course of a day. Results revealed that maternal depression is significantly correlated with their subjective sleep quality, sleep latency and daytime dysfunction. Child sleep quality was also found to be significantly correlated with ASD severity. In terms of maternal cortisol profiles, a significant number of mothers showed a flattened diurnal cortisol expression, and children of mothers with a flattened cortisol profile had significantly more sleep problems. Overall, results suggest that maternal and child sleep are affected by the child’s disability but also are mutually related. Future studies may consider employing measures such as actigraphy or somnography to quantify sleep quality and establish causal pathways between sleep, cortisol expression and caregiver and child outcomes. The present study has clinical implications in examining family sleep when considering treatment for ASD
ISSN: 2227-9032
DOI: 10.3390/healthcare10040666
Schools: School of Social Sciences 
Departments: Division of Psychology 
Rights: © 2022 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (
Fulltext Permission: open
Fulltext Availability: With Fulltext
Appears in Collections:SSS Journal Articles

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