Sleep problems and TBI

Between 30-70% of patients who have experienced a traumatic brain injury (TBI) complain of sleep problems, and the degree of the injury does not predict the severity of symptoms, according to research by the US Sleep Research Society published by Clinical Advisor journal.

Follow-up studies show 20% of patients still had significant sleep disturbances three years after a concussion. The most common sleep-wake disorders affecting those with TBI are insomnia, hypersomnia (also known as excessive daytime sleepiness), pleiosomnia, sleep-related breathing disorders, circadian rhythm disorders, parasomnias, and movement disorders. The research explained that treatment for TBI-related sleep issues is typically the same as for patients without a TBI. Although the research focused on adults, it is thought that children may experience similar problems. Establishing a routine is therefore key and our sleep hygiene tips include trying:
  • not to let your child overdo it during the day;
  • not to allow too much sleep;
  • keeping regular hours; and
  • making the child’s bed and bedroom somewhere they go only when they want to sleep.
See our Fatigue, sleep and relaxation section for more information.
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