HOW MUCH SLEEP DO THEY NEED? A GUIDE FOR PARENTS

By: Guest Blogger Hilary Thompson

Most parents are aware that babies, toddlers, and teens need extra sleep, but few know exactly how much is required. Children’s bodies and brains undergo such a rapid period of development that sufficient sleep is essential. Because children rarely show the same signs of sleep deprivation as adults, it is hard to tell if they are getting enough. In fact, sleep deprivation in children can often look like just the opposite––excess energy can be a sign of a child being overtired.

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So how much sleep do they really need? According to the Sleep Foundation, it varies. Use their handy chart below for reference.

AgeRecommendedMay Be AppropriateNot Recommended
Newborns

0 to 3 months

14 to 17 hours11 to 13 hours

18 to 19 hours

Less than 11 hours

More than 19 hours

Infants

4 to 11 months

12 to 15 hours10 to 11 hours

16 to 18 hours

Less than 10 hours

More than 18 hours

Toddlers

1 to 2 years

11 to 14 hours9 to 10 hours

15 to 16 hours

Less than 9 hours

More than 16 hours

Preschoolers

3 to 5 years

10 to 13 hours8 to 9 hours

14 hours

Less than 8 hours

More than 14 hours

School-Aged Children

6 to 13 years

9 to 11 hours7 to 8 hours

12 hours

Less than 7 hours

More than 12 hours

Teenagers

14 to 17 years

8 to 10 hours7 hours

11 hours

Less than 7 hours

More than 11 hours

Young Adults

18 to 25 years

7 to 9 hours6 hours

10 to 11 hours

Less than 6 hours

More than 11 hours

So what can you do to improve the quality and quantity of your children’s sleep? There are many factors that lead to good sleep hygiene for kids. Here are just a few:

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