Prevalence and Correlates of Hypersomnolence Symptoms in US Teens

Bhanu Prakash Kolla, Jian Ping He, Meghna P. Mansukhani, Suresh Kotagal, Mark A. Frye, Kathleen R. Merikangas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


Objective: Recent attention to pervasive sleep deficits in US adolescents has focused on sleep patterns and insomnia, but there are limited data on the prevalence and correlates of hypersomnolence symptoms. Method: The sample included 6,483 adolescents 13 to 18 years of age who were interviewed directly and had parent reports in the National Comorbidity Survey Replication Adolescent Supplement (NCS-A), a nationally representative sample of US youth. Information on sleep patterns/symptoms that were collected in the interview was used to determine the population prevalence of DSM-5 criterion A–defined hypersomnolence and component symptoms. Logistic regression analyses were used to examine associations between sleepiness and sub-symptoms of hypersomnolence with weekday/weekend bedtime, sleep duration, mental disorders, and psychotropic medication use. Results: Of the sample, 41.5% reported feeling sleepy during the daytime and 11.7% met criteria for hypersomnolence. The prevalence of hypersomnolence varied depending on age (p < .001) and was more common in adolescent girls (odds ratio [OR] 1.40, 95% CI 1.09–1.78). Excessive sleepiness and hypersomnolence symptoms were associated with shorter sleep duration and delayed bedtimes on weekdays and weekends Hypersomnolence was significantly associated with insomnia (OR 2.45, 95% CI 1.87–3.21) and mental disorders (OR 1.99, 95% CI 1.42–2.77). After accounting for insomnia, hypersomnolence was no longer associated with use of psychotropic medication (OR 1.61, 95% CI 0.97–2.66). Conclusion: Of adolescents with adequate sleep duration, 11.7% still reported symptoms of hypersomnolence. The strong association between hypersomnolence and insomnia suggests that sleep disorders in adolescents can fluctuate between over- and under-sleeping. Potential mechanisms underpinning the strong associations between sleep disturbances and mental disorders should be further pursued and could provide insight into prevention efforts.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)712-720
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 2019


  • hypersomnia
  • insomnia
  • sleep disturbance
  • sleepiness

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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