Keeping your children fit and healthy isn’t just about making sure that they get plenty of exercise. Children also need plenty of high-quality rest to help them thrive. With busy schedules of playing, learning, and growing to contend with, kids need a lot of sleep to recover each night. In fact, babies and children need significantly more sleep than their adult counterparts because they’re going through a rapid process of physical and mental development. This is a great article from Sleep.Report about sleep schedule.
Between the ages of 2 and 7 years of age, your child will need anywhere between 10 and 14 hours of sleep per day. The younger your little one is, the more sleep they’re likely to need. However, like adults, a child’s demand for sleep can vary according to their genetic makeup.
So, why is it so important for children to get that much sleep?
The Importance of a Good Night’s Rest
Sleep is a pivotal part of a healthy lifestyle. However, sleep can be particularly important for growing children. Studies have shown that kids who regularly get plenty of sleep are generally more likely to have a higher attention span, better behavior, and improved memory management too.
Not only does plenty of good sleep make your child physically healthier, but it can also improve their mood, reducing the risk of issues like anxiety and depression.
Sleep is a restorative process that helps us to recover from the things we do each day. As we sleep, our muscles repair themselves, our brain turns short-term experiences into long-term memories, and our bodies grow. When children go to sleep, they’re not just shutting down their consciousness. They’re moving into a state where they can process information and transform physically. Many of the growth hormones required to help children develop are released during sleep.
Children that fail to get enough sleep each night can struggle to access those crucial moments of development. Additionally, kids that don’t get enough nighttime rest wake up feeling exhausted, stressed and overwhelmed. A tired child is cranky, agitated, and can also have a hard time understanding and processing instructions. That’s because lack of sleep is as detrimental to the mind as getting drunk. It dims your senses, reduces your ability to respond to stimuli, and even makes you more emotional.
Children Need Sleep to Stay Healthy
Making sure children get the right amount of sleep each day doesn’t just stop them from flying into a tantrum at a moment’s notice. Kids that get enough sleep are more likely to take on challenges like difficult homework with confidence, which means that they succeed more in their academic achievements. Additionally, sleep is crucial to the functioning of a child’s immune system. This means that children who don’t get a lot of sleep might be more prone to things like colds and other common illnesses.
Over time, lack of sleep can even make children more prone to long-term problems like diabetes, obesity, and even heart disease. As a parent, it’s up to you to make sure that your child gets the rest that they need each day.
Sometimes, this will mean setting up a regular routine that makes it easier for your child to fall asleep and wake up at the same time each day. In other cases, you might need to set up several different strategies that can help your child relax like meditating with them before bed or having a hot bath to soothe the senses.
Whatever it takes, make sure that your child is getting the sleep that they need for consistent healthy growth.