Objective: The aim of the current study was to examine the potential relationship between sleep patterns, cortisol levels, and anxiety profiles in adolescents with Williams Syndrome (WS) compared to typically developing adolescents. Method: Thirteen adolescents with WS and thirteen TD adolescents (age range 12–18 years) were recruited. Participants were provided with a “testing kit”, containing instructions for collecting data through a sleep diary, MotionWare actigraphy, the Childhood Sleep Habits Questionnaire (CSHQ), and the Spence Children’s Anxiety Scale, and a salivary cortisol collection kit. Results: Adolescents in the WS group did not show diurnal variation in salivary cortisol. Significantly higher scores were reported for two CSHQ subsections, night wakings and parasomnias, in the WS group. Regarding the actigraphy, only significantly longer sleep latency was observed in the WS group. In comparison to the TD group, the WS group had significantly higher anxiety. As expected, the TD group showed typical diurnal variation in cortisol, whereas the WS group showed a flattened cortisol profile throughout the day. Conclusions: From the developmental perspective, this study provides new data supporting the conclusion that sleep problems are not transient but continue to persist into adolescence in WS. Future studies ought to consider examining the role of cortisol and its interplay with anxiety levels and sleep problems across the lifespan in individuals with WS.

Direct Link: https://doi.org/10.3390/bs13030220

Journal: Behavioral Sciences. 2023 Mar 3;13(3):220

Keywords: adolescents, anxiety, cortisol, Sleep, Williams syndrome,

Applications: Sleep,

CamNtech Reference: M23014

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