In a Child Development study of daily diary descriptions of discrimination by minority adolescents, experiencing discrimination during the day was associated with compromised sleep quality that night, as well as feelings of greater daytime dysfunction and sleepiness the following day.
The study also observed notable racial differences in sleep between Asian, Black, and Latinx youth. Wrist actigraphy readings revealed that Black adolescents slept 35 minutes less than Asian adolescents and 36 minutes less than Latinx youth. Black adolescents experienced the most minutes awake during the night after falling asleep, followed by Latinx and Asian youth. Latinx youth reported the highest levels of sleep disturbance while Asian youth reported the highest levels of daytime dysfunction.
“The current study contributes to research on discrimination, sleep, and adolescent development,” the authors wrote. “It is the first study to our knowledge to test the daily associations between discrimination and actigraphy-recorded and self-reported sleep in a large and diverse adolescent sample.”