What is a Healthy Amount of Sleep?
Often, adults catch enough sleep as they can grab in between family life, work, school, or social activities. Earlier in the month, we blogged about how important sleep is to a productive life
. But how much sleep should you and your family actually be getting? It depends on a lot of factors, but the primary way to guide your sleep habits is by age. As you will see, the amount we need gradually decreases until adulthood, where it levels off.
– Newborn babies require the most sleep of any age group, at around 12-18 hours. As anyone who raised a newborn baby knows, this does not happen in one instance, but rather is broken up throughout the day and night.
– Babies from around 3 months to a year old require around 14-15 hours of sleep. They will gradually be sleeping less than they did as newborns.
– Toddlers age 1-3 will sleep around 12-14 hours a day. Most of this is typically a night’s sleep and a nap sometime during the day.
Children in School
– Children old enough to attend school will be able to comfortably function with 10-11 hours of sleep a day – this can be through one night’s sleep, without naps, or include a daytime nap as well.
– Teenagers are approaching the adult’s daily sleep patterns, but still need a little extra to boost their alertness and energy. Teenagers need around 8.5-9.5 hours a day.
– Adults should be able to effectively function with 7-9 hours a sleep per day.
Keep in mind, these numbers are a guideline, but not a hard and fast rule – many other factors can affect someone’s daily sleep requirements. You have your basic sleep need, but you can build up a sleep deficit with bad sleeping habits, illness, or interrupted sleep. To stay energized, it’s important to catch up on sleep here and there to keep your sleep deficit down.
Easier said than done, right? But through getting exercise, setting a permanent schedule, and creating a regular bedtime routine (such as a bath or soft music before sleep), you can help yourself stay active, healthy, and energized throughout the day.