Sleep Disorders

Is Your Child/Youth Getting Enough Sleep?

Do you know that our sleep needs change with age? The American Psychiatric Association recommends that toddlers (1 to 2 years of age) should sleep for 11 to 14 hours per night. For preschoolers (3 to 5 years of age) sleep recommendation is 10 to 13 hours per night. For Elementary and middle school age kids (6 to 13 years of age) it is 9 to 11 hours per night. Also, the elementary school age group is 40% more likely to experience insomnia, nightmares, and narcolepsy than older kids. They do not get quality sleep because of these sleep issues and are likely to sleep more hours than older kids, otherwise they end up feeling groggy and tired. So, sleep needs comprise of both better quality and quantity of sleep. Teens (14 to 17 years) require at least 8 to 10 hours of sleep, while young adults (18 to 25 years) need 7 to 9 hours of sleep per night. 

Sleep hygiene is a must for a good night’s sleep which in turn is essential for proper brain functioning. The quality and quantity of sleep affects cognition, alertness, focus, attention span, and academic success in school. It also affects our mood and lack of sleep causes irritability, fatigue, decreased energy, poor decision making, depression and anxiety.

Both lack of sleep and too much sleep are associated with chronic health issues like diabetes, heart problems and can be a warning sign for congestive heart failure and Parkinson’s disease.

Do you know what is sleep hygiene recommendation for different age groups? Stay tuned for more information.