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How Much Sleep Does Your School-Age Child Need?

Diane Luke
Senior Editor, TipsHire

Sleep is an important contribution to the growth and development of the child. The daily number of hours of sleep that is needed depends on many factors, such as the child’s individual needs, health status, and especially his age. So, how much sleep does your school-age child need?

Every living being needs sleep as much as he needs food and water to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Lack of sleep can have consequences as serious as those due to inadequate hydration, or unhealthy diets. According to experts, while they are sufficient adults sleep 7-9 hours per day, children aged 5 to 12 need 10-11 hours of sleep per day.

Sleep problems and disorders are prevalent at this age. Children have an increasingly busy schedule, both at school and other activities during the day. Research shows that lack of sleep can increase the risk of obesity and diabetes as it has a negative effect on the parameters for regulating blood glucose levels. Lack of sleep determines insulin resistance, which can lead to excessive food consumption and lower energy consumption.

Also, the Helsinki University researchers recently studied the link between sleep and school performance.

439 students of 11 years of age completed a self-assessment form on hours of rest. The results have shown that insufficient sleep during the week is linked to attention problems during school hours, lack of energy, and slightly depressive moods.

Here are some useful tips that will help form a healthy rest schedule

Relax your mind – a simple breathing exercise can help. Breathe deeply through your nose for three seconds, then exhale for three seconds. Take a short break before breathing again. Repeat for five to ten minutes every night, before bedtime. Some people are turning to solutions such as lavender oil, valerian, and other herbs that help them sleep, but these may not be always adequate for school-age kids.

Regular physical activity – regular exercise is a great way to improve the sleep. Sign up your kid for a sustained sportive activity, such as karate, basketball, football, soccer, and so forth.

Create an environment that will conduct to sleep – the bedroom must be a space to sleep. Avoid turning it into an entertainment center with television, computer, or stereo system that can divert your kids’ minds from the necessary relaxation before the bedtime.

Pay attention to what your kids are eating – a heavy meal shortly before bedtime will interfere with sleep.

Between 12 and 18 years, the number of hours of sleep your kids are needing is at least 8 or 9, with slight variations, depending on various factors and events that occur in your kids’ lives.

Keep in mind that how much sleep does you school-age child needs depends on many factors but it is recommended that a schedule of at least 8 hours of sleep per night should be respected and strictly kept. On the other hand, if your kids are taught to respect this schedule, they will be prepared for adulthood sleeping schedule.

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