The effects of sleep on adolescent delinquency and victimization: Findings from a nationally representative sample of Americans




Pangrac, Rebekah M.

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This study examines the effects of sleep duration and poor sleep quality on adolescent delinquency and violent victimization. In addition to direct effects, this study tests for indirect effects operating through high self-control, depression, and anxiety. The data come from the first two waves of the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health, which provide a nationally representative sample of adolescents attending middle and high schools in the United States. Significant direct effects of both sleep variables were found, primarily concentrated in cross-sectional models. Significant indirect effects of sleep operating through self-control, depression, and anxiety were also found. Findings are informed by previous research and interpreted through theories of sleep and routine activities. Despite limitations, this study concludes that school policies that conflict with adolescents' biological sleep requirements may unintentionally contribute to adolescent delinquency and victimization.


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Add Health, adolescent, delinquency, sleep, victimization



Criminal Justice