Johns Hopkins All Children's Hospital

About Your Child's Sleep Study

Be prepared for your child’s sleep study. Learn what happens on the day of the study.

You may have many questions as you prepare for a sleep study. We want you to feel as comfortable as possible. Knowing what to expect will help you relax and prepare for your study.

What is a Sleep Study (Polysomnogram)?

A sleep study is a test used to evaluate brain activity, breathing and movements during sleep. During a sleep study, about 30 small electrodes are placed on your child to record his/her sleep activities. More than 1,000 pages of information with audio/video are recorded during the night. Registered sleep technologists with pediatric experience are present at all times to monitor the patient and ensure a high quality recording.

Scheduling a Study

An overnight sleep study is ordered directly by a primary care physician or a specialty physician. Once our office receives a referral, we will contact the family to schedule a date and time for the sleep study.

The patient or legal guardian must verbally confirm the appointment by calling 727-767-4458 by noon on the day of their study or they may need to be rescheduled.

Preparing for Your Child's Sleep Study

  • You should arrive at least 10 minutes before your scheduled appointment time in the Admission Office in the 1st floor lobby of the main hospital.
  • One Parent/Legal Guardian is required to stay overnight in the lab with your child. Both parents may attend the hook-up process for your child (approximately one hour); however, only one parent will be permitted to stay in the Sleep Lab overnight. This parent must stay in the room with your child at ALL TIMES. Ronald McDonald House on campus is available to accommodate additional family members and can be reached at 727-767-7699, No other children are permitted in the Sleep Lab during the study.
  • The day of the study should be a normal day for your child with no restrictions related to food, drink or medications (unless directed otherwise by the referring physician). However, limit caffeine products for at least 24 hours prior to the sleep study. 
  • On the day of the study, get your child up early and keep him/her awake and active (limiting napping) to maximize sleep during the study.
  • Make sure your child has clean, dry hair with no product of any kind in the hair or on the scalp.
  • Parent and child should have dinner before arriving for the sleep study.
  • Parents must provide all personal care items including, but not limited to, formula, diapers/pull-ups, bedtime snacks, and ALL medications.
  • Your child may sleep in whatever they are comfortable in (pajamas, t-shirt and shorts). Please no one-piece footed pajamas.
  • Children and parents can use personal electric devices such as cell phones and tablets for distraction during the electrode placement. After the hookup is complete, all electronic use is discontinued.
  • Linens will be provided for both the child and parent, but please feel free to bring your child’s own special blanket/pillow/animal to make your child feel more comfortable.
  • Once the overnight study is completed, you will be ready to go home at approximately 6:30 a.m.
  • Your child must be well for the sleep study. If your child has become ill, please contact the Sleep Center immediately for rescheduling at 727-767-4458.
  • If you have any other questions, or concerns, please feel free to contact the Sleep Lab directly at 727-767-4458.
  • If you do not show for the sleep study, you will not be rescheduled until you see your referring physician.

Helping Children Feel Comfortable During a Sleep Study

Your child can bring a toy, teddy bear or a favorite blanket from home to help them feel more comfortable. The parent will be sleeping in the room with the child. Children and parents can use personal electronic devices such as cell phones and tablets while the sensors are put in place, but all electronic personal devices must be turned off during the actual sleep study. Medically necessary electronic devices, such as feeding pumps are permitted. One parent must stay in the hospital during the study.

Sleep Study Results

Once the sleep study is completed, the results are sent to the referring physician. Please allow up to seven to 10 business days to receive results.

Patient Information

Driving Directions