Are your kids getting enough sleep?
What they found:
57.8 percent of middle-schoolers are not getting enough sleep on school nights
72.7 percent of high-schoolers are not getting enough sleep on school nights
Why is sleep important? The CDC points to the increased risk of these diseases:
- mental health
- attention and behavior
How much sleep to kids need? The American Academy of Sleep Medicine offers this guideline:
- Infants 4 months to 12 months old: 12 to 16 hours (including naps)
- Children 1 to 2 years old: 11 to 14 hours (including naps)
- Children 3 to 5 years old: 10 to 13 hours (including naps)
- Children 6 to 12 years old: 9 to 12 hours
- Teens 13 to 18 years old: 8 to 10 hours
- Adults: 7 hours or more
The academy also has a really cool sleep calculator. You put in your age and the time you get up and it tells you when you have to go to sleep. It told me I need to go to sleep before 10 (and then I laughed). My 14-year-old needs to go to bed between 8 p.m. and 10 p.m., my 17-year-old needs to be asleep between 7:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. And my poor husband should be asleep by 9 p.m.
- Be consistent. Go to bed at the same time each night and get up at the same time each morning, including on the weekends
- Make sure your bedroom is quiet, dark, relaxing, and at a comfortable temperature
- Remove electronic devices, such as TVs, computers, and smart phones, from the bedroom
- Avoid large meals, caffeine, and alcohol before bedtime
- Get some exercise. Being physically active during the day can help you fall asleep more easily at night.