The amount of sleep you need each night will vary over your lifetime. In fact, your sleep needs are closely related to your age.
This article explores how much sleep you need and the target bedtime for each age group. It also discusses some common problems that keep people from going to bed on time and falling asleep easily.
how much sleep do you need
To decide your bedtime, it’s important to consider how much sleep you need to feel refreshed. This is your sleep needs.
Some experts calculate your sleep needs based on your age. Your genes, environment and health also affect how much sleep you need.
Sleep experts say adults should get seven to nine hours of sleep, or an average of eight hours, to optimize their health.
Some people are short sleepers or long sleepers. Short sleepers who get less than seven hours of sleep may be fine. Long sleepers need more than 9 hours to feel fully rested.
Children need more sleep than adults to feel fully rested. For young adults and those recovering from sleep debt, getting more than nine hours of sleep a night may help.
Lack of sleep or sleep deprivation has been linked to depression, heart disease, obesity, weight gain and other health problems.
Recommended by age
The National Sleep Foundation recommends the following:
- Newborns (0 to 3 months): should get an average of 14 to 17 hours of sleep per day, including naps.
- Infants (4 to 11 months): should get an average of 12 to 15 hours of sleep per day, including naps.
- Toddlers (12 to 35 months): Average should be 11 to 14 hours, including naps.
- Preschoolers (3 to 5 years old): Should average 10 to 13 hours per day.
- School-aged children (6 to 13 years old): should work an average of 9 to 11 hours per day.
- Teens (14 to 17 years old): should work an average of 8 to 10 hours a day.
- Young people (18 to 25 years old): Average 7 to 9 hours per day.
- Adults (26 to 64 years): Average 7 to 9 hours per day.
- Seniors (65 years and older): Average 7 to 9 hours per day.
To set a target bedtime, decide when you need to get up. Then count down the hours of sleep you need.
For example, if the desired wakeup time is between 7:00 AM and 8:00 AM:
- Put baby to bed around 7:00 to 8:00 pm when sleepy
- Toddlers can go to bed between 7:00pm and 9:00pm
- Preschoolers can go to bed at 8:00pm and 9:00pm
If your school or work schedule requires you to wake up between 5:00 am and 7:00 am, the suggested bedtimes are as follows:
- School-age children should go to bed between 8:00 and 9:00 pm
- Teens should try to sleep between 9:00 and 10:00 pm
- Adults should try to fall asleep between 10:00 and 11:00 pm
Schedules, wake times, and even sleep needs can all change, so help maintain flexibility. One person’s needs may be different from others, even if their circumstances are similar. Individual needs are different.
Despite age and sleep needs, maintaining a consistent wake-up time is important for better sleep, even on weekends.
difficult meeting bedtime
It’s normal to miss your goal bedtime or fall asleep from time to time. If difficulty falling asleep becomes a pattern, you may be dealing with insomnia.
Insomnia in children
Children who have trouble falling asleep may be experiencing behavioral insomnia. There are two types of behavioral insomnia—sleep-onset and restrictive. Some children may have both types.
sleep-onset insomnia in children
Sleep-onset insomnia usually means that the child has become dependent on some soothing routine or item and “needs” them to fall asleep. If they wake up in the middle of the night, they may also need these daily activities.
One way to help your child with insomnia is to develop your child’s ability to self-soothe. Some experts say you can try to get your child to “cry out.” There are two ways to do this. One way is to put your child to bed and ignore the crying until the morning. (Their health can be checked.)
Another way is to gradually increase the interval when reassuring the child. For example, parents can soothe a crying child every five minutes, then gradually increase to ten minutes, then fifteen minutes, and so on.
It’s important to note that experts don’t all agree on the best way to help a child fall asleep independently. Some evidence suggests that when children “cry out,” the stress hormone cortisol rises and stays in their bodies for days later. Some parents also find the “cry it out” technique too stressful.
At least one study showed no difference in sleep metrics between children whose parents made them “cry out” and children who didn’t make them “cry out” five years after the “cry out” phase.
Restrictive insomnia in children
Restrictive insomnia occurs most often when caregivers do not set a consistent bedtime and maintain a regular bedtime. The problem may get worse if the child starts to oppose or object to bedtime.
Resetting boundaries is the best way to help restrictive insomnia. It might be a good idea to follow these strategies:
- Set and maintain consistent bedtimes
- Patiently refuse unreasonable requests before going to bed
- Schedule a quiet activity 20 to 30 minutes before bed
Teens and Sleep
About 75 percent of teens don’t get enough sleep. Early school start times, late-night social activities, digital device use, and changes in sleep cycles all play a role. Neighborhoods without enough trees and too much noise also delayed sleep, the researchers found.
In adults, insomnia may be due to your genes. It can also be associated with sleep disorders such as sleep apnea or psychological conditions such as anxiety and depression.
Insomnia can lead to fatigue, daytime sleepiness, poor concentration and concentration, low energy and motivation, and even an increased risk of suicide.
The good news is that there are several ways to treat insomnia in adults. Medications can be a temporary solution. If you want to avoid medication, cognitive behavioral therapy (CBTI) for insomnia is an effective option.
old age and sleep
Insomnia can become a bigger problem as you age. Menopause, restless legs syndrome, dementia, and sleep apnea can all keep you awake or disrupt sleep after age 60, the National Institute on Aging reports. If you think a medical condition may make it difficult for you to sleep, talk to a healthcare professional or sleep specialist.
Tips and Tricks
You can more easily fall asleep and fall asleep on time. Here are some strategies that may help.
good sleeping environment
Your bedroom can help you fall asleep and sleep better. For most people, it’s a good idea to start with a quiet, cool, and dark room. You should also consider whether your mattress and bedding will harm or help you seek a stable bedtime.
If your workspace is in the bedroom, try to minimize any visual stress.
A consistent bedtime routine and relaxation techniques can also be helpful. A nighttime routine prepares your mind and body for sleep and helps you relax before resting.
Some people have had success reading, listening to music, stretching or taking a bath. It is best to avoid overstimulating activities such as watching TV or exercising before bed.
Cell phones and electronics should be avoided as much as possible. Artificial light on screens can change your sleep schedule and make it harder to fall asleep.
good sleep hygiene
Good sleep hygiene starts during the day. Avoid daytime naps. They reduce your overall sleep debt, but they also reduce the drive to fall asleep.
You can also spend your time outdoors, in the sun, if possible. Studies have shown that exposure to outdoor light during the day can prevent delayed sleep onset.Of course, there is such a thing Too much sun exposure. This is especially true in arctic regions where there is plenty of light at night in summer.
It’s a good idea to limit caffeine and alcohol, both of which can disrupt sleep.
After going to bed, limit brain-stimulating activity as much as possible. You want to associate your bed with sleep, not wakefulness.you are trying to train your body bed method sleep.
Just as your dietary needs can change at different ages, your sleep needs can change throughout your life. Babies and toddlers have the greatest need for sleep. Teens also need extra sleep. Most adults need seven to nine hours a day.
If you’re not getting the recommended amount of sleep for your age, you may want to establish a better sleep routine to make it easier to hit your target bedtime. Short-term sleep aids may be helpful, but if you think you may have insomnia, talk to your healthcare provider. This is important for your overall health.
Aligning with bedtime and wake-up time can be a challenge. It may help create a healthy sleep environment, stick to a relaxed nighttime routine, and practice good sleep hygiene.
If you want to learn more about optimal bedtimes, talk to a board-certified sleep medicine physician. The problem may be an underlying health condition rather than your day-to-day life.
Frequently Asked Questions
How much sleep do adults need?
It is recommended that most adults sleep seven to nine hours a day. However, these are just general guidelines and some people may need more or less sleep to feel well rested.
How can I go to bed earlier?
To go to bed earlier, develop and follow a routine each night. Meditate, read, take a hot bath or soak in a hot bath to relax and get you ready for sleep. Try to avoid using your phone or computer for at least 30 minutes before bed, as blue light from electronic devices can make it more difficult to fall asleep. Avoid naps in the afternoon. When you’re ready to go to bed, turn off all the lights in the room, make sure the room temperature is a little cool, block outside noise with earplugs or a white noise machine, and use only your bed to sleep.
What time should I get up?
The time you should wake up will depend on your schedule and how many hours of sleep you need to feel fully rested. If you need to wake up at 8am to leave for work at 9am, the ideal time to fall asleep is probably around 11pm. This time may vary from person to person.
How many hours of sleep does the child need?
Children 12 to 35 months (toddlers) should get 11 to 14 hours of sleep, including daytime naps. Preschoolers between the ages of three and five should get 10 to 13 hours of sleep per day. School-aged children between the ages of 6 and 13 should get about 10 or 11 hours of sleep a day.
Create the best bedroom for sleep