The management of insomnia in adolescents attending psychiatric care: a qualitative analysis of the therapeutic practices of child and adolescent psychiatrists in the Brussels-Capital Region

Sarah Quoidbach1, Sophie Symann2 Published in the journal : July 2022 Category : Psychiatrie infanto-juvénile

Summary :

Child and adolescent psychiatrists are commonly confronted with complaints of insomnia raised by their adolescent patients. In Belgium, there are currently no official recommendations for managing insomnia in children under 18 years of age. Given this context, child and adolescent psychiatrists often have to make off-label therapeutic choices for the treatment of pediatric insomnia. The purpose of this study was to investigate the practices of child and adolescent psychiatrists confronted with sleep disorders in adolescents attending their outpatient practice. Based on a qualitative methodology, semi-structured interviews were conducted involving 10 child and adolescent psychiatrists using French language and working in the Brussels-Capital Region.

What is already known about the topic?

Sleep disorders are common in adolescents under psychiatric care, but no drug has so far marketing authorization for this indication in children under 18 years. Child and adolescent psychiatrists must thus make off-label therapeutic choices if they decide to use medication.

What does this article bring up for us?

The purpose of this article was to investigate the therapeutic practices of child and adolescent psychiatrists in dealing with adolescent patients suffering from insomnia. In the absence of official recommendations, this qualitative study sought to determine whether there is some harmony among the therapeutic strategies of the psychiatrists interviewed.

Key Words

Insomnia, child and adolescent psychiatrists, therapeutic practices, off-label, prescription