Tips to help kids get more sleep


by KING 5 News

Posted on August 28, 2013 at 9:48 AM

Updated Wednesday, Aug 28 at 1:49 PM

We know children are sleeping less now than they did 30 years ago.

Children who have a sleep debt have a more difficult time completing school work, they don’t score as well on tests, may be more distractible while having difficulty maintaining attention, and they may be at higher risk for having an unhealthy weight.

Start the school year with better habits by following these guidelines.

How much sleep do children need?

  • Sleep debt is created when we don’t sleep enough
  • Preschoolers: 10 to 12 hours of total sleep
  • School-age children: 10 to 11 hours total sleep
  • 12 year-old to teens: 8.5 to 9.5 hours total sleep

Ways to support good sleep:

  • 8 p.m. bedtime for young children
  • 10 p.m. bedtime after age 12 and up
  • No screens 1 to 2 hours prior to bed
  • Exercise 30 minutes a day
  • No sleeping with cell phones!

What parents need to know:

  • School start is a stressful time
  • Anxiety, depression can manifest as sleep problems
  • Have patience when moving bedtime back
  • Remind teens: the more active you are, the easier you sleep!