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Healthy Sleep Habits Essential to Back to School Routines

Posted by on August 7th, 2018 Posted in: Blog, Fitness, K-12


“Child Asleep on Bed.” by Annie Spratt via Unsplash, July 1, 2018, CCO.

As parents and caregivers around the country start to adjust to back to school routines, students are also adjusting.  One area that impacts students as they return to the classroom is sleep.  How much sleep should your student be getting?  What are the benefits of getting a good night of sleep?  What are the risks of not getting enough sleep?

Sleep is essential to helping one feel rested, healthy and assists with processing new information.  There are 5 stages of sleep and quality rest through all 5 stages is necessary for a healthy sleep.  The brain cycles through all the stages while we sleep and each stage produces a different biological response and benefit.  The stages are stage 1, 2, 3, 4, and rapid eye movement (REM).

This leads us back to the question of how much sleep is enough.  Although there are several factors that impact this number, the general recommendations are:

  • Newborns:16-18 hours a day
  • Preschool-aged children:11-12 hours a day
  • School-aged children:At least 10 hours a day
  • Teens:9-10 hours a day
  • Adults (including the elderly):7-8 hours a day

It is also recommended that regardless of age, establish a bedtime routine designed to encourage healthy sleep habits.  Tips for achieving a healthy bedtime routine include:

  • Stick to a bedtime, and give your kids a heads-up 30 minutes and then 10 minutes beforehand.
  • Include a winding-down period in the routine.
  • Encourage older kids and teens to set and maintain a bedtime that allows for the full hours of sleep needed at their age.

The risk of not getting enough sleep can produce an impact on your health.  The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) states insufficient sleep has been linked to the development and management of a number of chronic diseases and conditions, including diabetes, cardiovascular disease, obesity, and depression.

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