Sleep is very important for health, and it is even more important for children in the growth and development stage. So we need to cultivate children's healthy sleep habits.
Insufficient sleep can cause children to have problems with attention, behavior, and learning. It can also increase the risk of accidents, injuries, high blood pressure, obesity, diabetes, and depression. Adolescent sleep deprivation also increases the risk of self-harm, suicidal thoughts.
However, too much sleep can also damage health, leading to high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity and mental health problems.
How much sleep do kids need per day?
The American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM) established a committee composed of 13 Sleep Medicine and research experts. Through the analysis, discussion, and voting of more than 800 papers, it took 10 months to finally form a recommendation for the child's sleep hours.
This is also the first time that the American Academy of Sleep Medicine has issued such recommendations about how much sleep children need at different stages in their development. Keep in mind that these numbers reflect total sleep hours in a 24-hour period. So if your child naps, please also take this into consideration when you add up his or her typical sleep hours.
The below is the sleep needs by age.
For those babies within 4 months, their sleep pattern and duration are too variable, and there is insufficient evidence on the effects of the health, so no recommendations have been made.
The American Academy of Pediatrics(AAP) has issued a statement of Endorsement supporting these guidelines from the American Academy of Sleep Medicine(AASM).
Children are in the developmental stage, therefore, please follow the recommended sleep hours by age, and ensuring adequate sleep time, which is conducive to the development of a healthy lifestyle for children.
How to help children develop good sleep habits?
Let the children fall asleep independently and peacefully, which requires the parents to cultivate consciously. Please pay attention to cultivating good sleeping behaviors before the children have formed bad sleeping habits. After the baby is 4 months old, once a bad sleep habit has formed, it will be very difficult to correct it. In order to help children establish good sleep patterns and sleeping habits, parents' attitudes must be clear. Help children establish good sleep habits, which is a manifestation of parents' true love for their children.
- Help infants to establish sleep routines
Many good behaviors and habits in early infancy are formed through the establishment of the conditioned reflex. The good habits of children sleeping regularly, going to bed regularly, and getting up on time also use this learning method.
When a baby is 2-3 months old, parents can help him gradually establish a good sleep pattern according to the child's special living habits. When the child is going to sleep, let the child lie on the bed and coax the sleep, then the parents take some fixed activities, such as bathing before going to bed, changing pajamas, putting on dry diapers or letting the child listen to the same sleeping song or tell the same story, or the parent do the same action-kiss him, pat him, etc., until the child falls asleep. Parents adopt such a fixed sleep mode every day. After a period of time, as long as you do these things, the child will know that it is time to fall asleep, and can develop the habit of falling asleep on their own, that is, a good sleep conditioning reflex is established.
Parents need to keep in mind that the younger the child is, the longer time will be to establish this conditioned reflex, please be patient. If the child gets used to the habit of holding, shaking, or taking milk to fall asleep, it will be very difficult to correct them later.
- Help infants distinguish between day and night
There should be a clear difference between day and night in indoor lighting, and there should be a clear difference between day and night activities. You don’t need to hang up the curtains during the daytime nap, and you don’t need to deliberately create a quiet environment; nighttime sleep requires dark lights, which is different from daytime naps.
- Do not take more than 4 hours of nap during the day
Communicate with your child as much as possible during the day, play and talk with him, and use the child's sober time for early education. In fact, early education can be carried out at all times, everywhere, and everything we live in.
- Don't make your child too excited or tired before going to bed
Don't over-excited before the child going to bed, or make the child too tired. Because this will increase the concentration of adrenaline to fight the body's fatigue, the child will have difficulty falling asleep because of excitement, and irritability.
Before going to bed at night, be sure to change into dry, water-permeable diapers to prevent infants from being disturbed by leaking urine, drenching or changing diapers.
Parents’ sleep habits will also affect children, so we should have a good sleep habit and be a good example for them to sleep at least 7 hours a night.