The closest thing parents have to a fight club is debating kids and sleep. But the battle isn’t over once you’ve exhausted all the sleep training arguments — it just moves from “if” to “how much.” Fortunately, the American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM) has determined about how much sleep kids should get based on their age. So, now you can argue with someone you don’t have to also see at Little League this weekend.
The recommendations were made by a Pediatric Consensus Panel of 13 sleep experts recommended by the American Association of Sleep Technologists, American Academy of Pediatrics, and the Sleep Research Society (go ahead argue with those bonafides). They spent 10 months looking at 864 scientific studies focused on children’s health and duration of sleep. Using a formal grading system (and including naps), the experts concluded that infants 4-to-12 months old should sleep 12 to 16 hours out of 24. Toddlers between one and 2 years old need between 11 and 14 hours, and kids 3 to 5 years old need about 10 to 13 hours of sleep daily. Once regular naps cease, children 6 to 12 years old should get about 9 to 12 hours, and teenagers 13 to 16 years old should have at least 8 to 10 hours of sleep, but parents should not expect that to make them any less bitchy.
According to AASM president Nathaniel Watson, about one third of people in the U.S. do not get enough sleep on average, and it’s the most crucial for growing children. Kids who do not get enough sleep are more at risk of developing behavioral problems, obesity, depression, anxiety, and even suicidal thoughts as teenagers. So, obviously these recommendations are more about your kid’s health than sticking it to another parent. That said, if these findings happen to help you do both things, then embrace it. It’s not just nice to win one, it’s less exhausting than arguing forever.
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[H/T] Tech Times