The influence of sleep and movement on mental health and life satisfaction during the transition to parenthood

Alison Divine, Chris Blanchard, Cecilia Benoit, Danielle Symons Downs, Ryan E. Rhodes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objectives: This study assessed whether sleep and physical activity impact mental health and life satisfaction across the transition to parenthood. This study assessed the impact of parenthood on mental health of new parents and parents expecting their second child, and whether change in mental health occurred dyadically across couples. Design: Longitudinal 12-month study. Participants: One hundred and fifty-seven couples (N = 314) between the ages of 25 and 40, who were not expecting to have a child (n = 102), expecting their first child (n = 136), or expecting their second child (n = 76) were recruited. Measurements: Participants completed measures at baseline, 6 months, and 12 months. Sleep was assessed with how often participants met sleep guidelines (7-9 hours). Physical activity was measured objectively via accelerometers. Mental health was measured using 6 items from the short form-12 Quality of Life Survey. Life satisfaction was assessed with the Satisfaction with Life Scale (5 items). Results: Mental health was not predicted by physical activity but was predicted by sleep. Sleep at 6 months was positively related to mental health at 6 months (β = 0.156, p < .001), and sleep at 12 months was positively related to mental health at 12 months (β = 0.170, p < .001). The change in mental health did not occur dyadically: mental health increased for women but not for men across groups. Mental health was positively related to life satisfaction at 6 months (β = 0.338, p < .001) and 12-months (β = 0.277, p < .001).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)475-483
Number of pages9
JournalSleep health
Volume8
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 2022

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Health(social science)
  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Behavioral Neuroscience

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