Sleepless on the spectrum

Illustration shows child's head, with an EEG background, and a sleeping figure floating in the clouds above his head.
Spectrum Microphone

Sleep problems in autism, explained

Many people with autism have difficulty falling and staying asleep, but there may be ways to help them.

By Hannah Furfaro
6 February 2020 | 6 min read

What’s the connection between autism and sleep?

For many people with autism, a good night’s sleep is an elusive thing.

By Rebecca Horne
20 January 2020 | 4 min watch
Spectrum stories podcast logo.
Spectrum Microphone

Spectrum Stories: Where autism meets sleeplessness

Scientists are trying to understand why people with autism so often have trouble sleeping, and how to help them.

By Jacob Brogan
13 November 2017 | 1 min read

Inside Scoop From the Autism Anchors: Sleep on the spectrum

Two scientists describe the causes and consequences of sleep disruptions in autism -- and what to do about them.

By Spectrum
13 November 2017 | 1 min read

Electronic glow may disrupt sleep for people on the spectrum

Exposure to certain types of light at night may exacerbate sleep issues among people with autism.

By Christopher Colwell
13 November 2017 | 6 min read
Photo: two children sit on the top step of a flight of carpeted stairs, reading size by side.

How to get children with autism to sleep

Insomnia troubles many children with autism. Luckily, research is awakening parents to some simple bedtime solutions.

By Claudia Wallis
13 November 2017 | 19 min read
spotlight on brain in doctor's office

Note to autism scientists: Control for z’s

Differences in sleep and circadian rhythm may distort the results of autism studies.

By Nicholette Zeliadt
13 November 2017 | 6 min read
closed eye and wide open eye against sky

Autism may disrupt the body’s circadian clock

Sleep problems in autism may stem from the same biological changes that underlie the core features of the condition.

By Veronique Greenwood
13 November 2017 | 5 min read
Spectrum Microphone

Sleepless nights rouse behavioral problems in children with autism

Children with autism who have sleep problems are often distracted, hyperactive, irritable and aggressive.

By Kristin Sohl
13 November 2017 | 5 min read
girl falling through the sky with bed, hat, pillow and teddy bear

Family circus starring child with autism runs all night

Erin, a girl with autism, stayed awake talking, singing and playing acrobat — but not sleeping — for about four years.

By Rebecca Horne
13 November 2017 | 3 min read

Explore more from The Transmitter

Brain organoid size matches intensity of social problems in autistic people

Overgrown organoids could point to mechanisms underlying profound autism.

By Holly Barker
18 July 2024 | 5 min read

Persistent protein pairing enables memories to last

The complex of two memory proteins, rather than the individual molecules acting independently, underlie month-long memories in mice, a new study suggests.

By Elissa Welle
17 July 2024 | 5 min read
A digitally distorted image of a file folder against a blue gradient background.

Data access changes to UK Biobank stir unease in neuroscientists

“I feel a little bit in limbo,” says neuroscientist Stephanie Noble, who has paused a study using Biobank data after the repository shifted from a data download to a cloud-only access model.

By Calli McMurray
16 July 2024 | 7 min read