Nightmares and anxiety in elementary-aged children: is there a relationship

J A Mindell, K M Barrett
Child: Care, Health and Development 2002, 28 (4): 317-22

OBJECTIVE: To determine whether a relationship exists between children's anxiety level and nightmare occurrence.

METHOD: A total of 60 kindergarten, second and fourth grade school children and their parents completed questionnaires assessing nightmare occurrence and anxiety.

RESULTS: According to parental report, children who experience nightmares have significantly higher levels of anxiety than children who do not experience nightmares. The results also indicate a relationship between nightmare distress and trait anxiety.

CONCLUSION: These findings suggest that anxiety issues should be considered in children who are experiencing nightmares.

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