Of all the challenges parents find themselves involved in, the battle of bedtime is one of the most common. As parents, we all know the benefits of early kids bedtime – sadly, our children don’t always agree!
Getting enough sleep is crucial for staying healthy, and this is especially true for growing bodies. Here at Twin Cities Kids Club, we want to help smooth the path of parenthood as much as possible. With this in mind, we have put together some top tips to help you both snooze off to dreamland in no time!
What Are The Benefits of Early Kids Bedtime?
We are all aware of how great a deep sleep can feel, but a good sleep routine can also have a number of health benefits.
Boost your child’s help
Getting your kid to bed early can help to improve their overall help. Research suggests that late bedtimes can result in a higher BMI, as well as poor dietary habits. Alertness can also be negatively affected, and this can result in poorer school performance.
Enjoy a long lie-in!
You may think that a later bedtime leads to a later wake-up call, but the opposite is actually true. Going to sleep too late can cause the body to become overtired, leading to increased hormone production. As a result, it is harder to get to sleep, and your child is more likely to wake up early.
Reduce bedtime stress
Bedtime can become a battle, and this leads to a whole lot of unwanted stress for you and your child. Setting a simple, consistent, and regular routine is the secret to a calm and relaxed evening. An earlier bedtime can play a vital role in this.
Poor sleep habits lead to a tired, grumpy child, which is more likely to make everything an uphill battle. Combat this with an earlier bedtime, and enjoy a happier home.
An early kids’ bedtime also allows you to really make the most of the time you have together. Treat it as a chance to bond, sharing books and stories, talking about the day, singing, and snuggling. If everyone is calm and relaxed, bedtime will become a breeze.
Improved sleep quality
Consistency is the secretary to improved quality sleep. Your child will feel secure and safe, allowing them to nod off without worry. Once you have a routine in place, the body will automatically begin producing more melatonin, inducing a night of peaceful sleep.
Set good habits in-store
When your kids are young, it is your responsibility to help them establish solid routines for later in life. By setting good sleep patterns, consistency, and routine, you are helping your child to develop good habits. These will help them to stay healthy later in life.
How Much Sleep Does My Child Need?
The amount of sleep your child needs depends mainly on their age. Older children are more likely to be engaged in physical activity and mentally taxing learning. Babies, on the other hand, are busy trying to grow.
1-4 weeks old: 15-16 hours a day
Newborns are famous for their sleep habits and tend to sleep for between 15-18 hours a day. This tends to be in short bursts of between two and four hours at a time. These bursts can be at any time, as newborns have no circadian rhythm or internal biological clock.
1-4 months old: 14-15 hours a day
You may notice more regularity in sleep patterns by around six weeks old. Kids in this bracket tend to sleep for between 4 and 6 hours at a time – good news! They also tend to have a better understanding of days and nights.
4-12 months old: 14-15 hours a day
As your child approaches a year old, they will be averaging around 12 hours of sleep a night. At this age, they are also physically able to sleep through the night without waking. This period is crucial in starting to build and establish healthy sleep habits and patterns.
As a rule, most babies will be having around three naps each day, dropping to 2 at six months old. Now is the time to try and make these more regular. Biological rhythms are maturing, and naps tend to be around 9 am, 12-2 pm, and 3 – 5 pm, and tend to be around an hour at a time.
1-3 years old: 12-14 hours per day
Once the first year is up, morning and evening naps are usually dropped as your child’s sleep needs change. The midday nap may still take place and could be anything from 1 – 3.5 hours long.
Most toddlers at this stage will average around 10 hours of sleep a day, though 14 is optimum. Nighttime is established as bedtime, and tends to be from about 7-9 pm, waking around 6-8 am.
3-6 years old: 10-12 hours per day
Naps drop off during this period and become gradually shorter in length. Any new sleep problems tend to tail off after around three years old, and sleeping and waking hours remain relatively consistent.
7-12 years old: 10-11 hours per day
This is the time of school, socializing, friends, and family – all of which can be exhausting! Bedtimes get later and later as after-school activities take priority, but it is still important to establish consistent routines. Average sleep is around 9 hours, though 12 is the recommended amount.
12-18 years old: 8-9 hours per day
The teen years are notoriously tiring, and your child will need plenty of sleep to tackle the challenges they face. They may be older, but teenagers still need plenty of rest to allow them to focus and excel at school and in life. Once again, consistency is key, so help them to establish regular, predictable sleep patterns.
Catch Some Z’s
Sleep is an essential part of keeping your child safe, happy, and healthy, and this carries on throughout their childhood. By establishing the importance of good sleep from a young age, you can help your child to develop great habits. These will last a lifetime, offering many years of health and well-being benefits.
Here at Twin Cities Kids Club, we understand the importance of establishing a great sleep routine. Different ages have different requirements, needs, and routines. Understanding these nuances is a great first step to setting up successful sleeping habits and enjoying nothing but sweet dreams. Sign up to access our top tips and insider tricks!