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Health Services


Earla White


Many U.S. adolescents suffer from sleep disorders. Although poor sleep habits may contribute to health issues, less is known about how parental perspectives influence sleep health in adolescents. The purpose of this descriptive phenomenological study was to address a knowledge gap in understanding parental views to promote better sleep habits in adolescents. The blended theoretical framework included the theories of caring science, social learning, advocacy paradigm, and repair and restoration of sleep. Twenty parents in the Southeastern United States participated in open-ended interviews. Research questions were designed to elicit parental perspectives about recognizing unhealthy sleep habits, improving daily sleep health routines, and identifying conditions that led to consultation with health professionals. Colaizzi's data analysis strategy demonstrated thematic parental reports of declines in attitudes, behaviors, and performances as factors for recognizing unhealthy sleep habits; consistent and routine schedules as options for promoting improved sleep habits; and irregular sleep or health problems as reasons for consultation with health professionals. Recommendations for future research include exploring other geographical locations and investigating school bus schedules interfering with early morning sleep loss. To affect positive social change, dissemination of this study's findings to health practitioners may influence enhanced provider-patient communications and ultimately contribute to improved sleep habits among adolescents. Additionally, this study's findings may inform health care administrators with strategies to develop effective parent and provider education programs while reducing unnecessary health services' utilization and resulting costs for adolescent health.