How Much Sleep do Babies and Kids Needs?

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Getting enough sleep is important for both adults and children. You need to get a good night’s rest so you can function properly the next day, but your child needs even more sleep.

Babies and kids sleep a lot not only because they have nothing else to do, but because sleep is vital for their development. Most parents don’t really know how much sleep their kids need, particularly with their first child.

Babies and kids are too small to understand their circadian rhythm. Lack of sleep can have a negative impact on your child which only intensifies the importance of making sure your kid sleeps enough.

Growth hormone is secreted during sleep, meaning sufficient sleep is vital for baby’s or child’s development. We can easily say that nature has protected babies by ensuring they spend about 50% of their time sleeping, which is considered crucial for their growth.

A little-known fact is that getting enough sleep protects babies and children from vascular damage and it also aids weight management. Kids who don’t sleep enough tend to weigh more compared to their counterparts who do.

Making sure your child gets enough sleep has other benefits too. For instance, humans (both adults and children) produce anti-inflammatory cytokines while they sleep. These proteins are important for the functionality of the immune system and prevention of infections. In addition, children who are sleep deprived have a shorter attention span than other kids who do get enough sleep.

Reasons, why children don’t get enough sleep, are numerous. In some cases, parents don’t know how much sleep their kids need. It’s not uncommon for parents to keep their child awake during the day as much as they can so the kid can sleep all night. That’s not how it goes. 

See also: Natural Non-Habit Forming Sleep Aids for Kids


Age

Daytime sleep

Daytime sleep

Total sleep

Newborn

8 Hours

8 Hours 30 Mins

16 hrs 30 mins

One Month

6 hrs to 7 hrs

8 hrs to 9 hrs

14 hrs to 16 hrs

Three Months

4 hrs to 5 hrs

10 hrs to 11 hrs

14 hrs to 16 hrs

Six Months

3 hrs

11 hrs

14 hrs

Nine Months

2 hrs 30 mins

11 hrs

13 hrs 30 mins

12 Months

2 hrs 30 mins

11 hrs

13 hrs 30 mins

Table showing how many hours of sleep your baby may need between the ages of one month and 12 months (BabyCentre).


Children need a more tightly regulated sleep pattern than adults. Sometimes children don’t sleep well because the mattress is uncomfortable.

Children who are used to sleeping in one particular environment may find it difficult to fall asleep when the setting has changed.

Basically, all sorts of reasons influence a child’s sleep pattern. But, how much sleep children need? Similarly to adults, the ideal duration of sleep may vary from one child to another. All kids and babies are different and their needs differ as well. Let’s take a look at the average duration of sleep your baby or child needs based on the age group.

child awake playing

0-3 mo​​​​nths

Babies up to three months old generally need between 14 and 17 hours of sleep a day. Sleep duration 11-13 hours and 18-19 hours may be appropriate, but bear in mind your newborn baby shouldn’t get less than 11 and more than 19 hours of sleep a day.

4-11 months​​​​

Infants who are 4-11 months old typically need 12 to 15 hours of sleep. While 10 to 11 hours and 16 to 18 hours are also acceptable durations of sleep, it’s not recommended for babies of this age to sleep less than 10 and more than 18 hours a day.

1-2 years​​​​

Toddlers who are 1-2 years old generally require 11 to 14 hours of sleep. Although 9 to 10 hours of sleep is also appropriate just like 15 to 16 hours, make sure your toddler doesn’t get less than 9 and more than 16 hours of sleep during the day.

3-5 years​​​​

Preschoolers typically need 10 to 13 hours of sleep. It’s also appropriate to have your child sleep 8 to 9 hours or about 14 hours a day. Less than 8 and more than 14 hours of sleep during the day is not recommended.

6-13 years​​​​

School-aged children need 9 to 11 hours of sleep, but it’s also acceptable to have your son or daughter sleep 7 to 8 or 12 hours. Make sure your school-aged child doesn’t get less than 7 or more than 12 hours of good night’s rest.

14-17 ​​​​​​​​ye​​​​​​​​ars

Teenagers typically need 8 to 10 hours of sleep, but 7 to 11 hours is also appropriate. Inadequate duration of sleep for adolescents is less than 6 and more than 11 hours.

Conclusio​​​​​​​​n​​​​​​​​​​

Sufficient duration of sleep is necessary for proper growth and development of babies and children. It’s easy to make mistakes that prevent your child from getting much-needed sleep, but one can easily turn things around. Besides maintaining a sleep duration, make sure your child goes to bed every night at the same time and wakes up every morning at the same time as well.

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