Kids between the ages of 5- and 11-years need between 9 and 11 uninterrupted hours of sleep every night. Sleep habits, such as consistent going-to-bed and wake-up times, and reducing screen time at night, are just as important as diet and exercise for a child’s overall health and wellbeing. Getting enough sleep helps to strengthen your kid’s immune system and reduce the risk of illness and infection.
Kids might sleep better at nighttime if they:
Keep a regular sleep and wake pattern, even on the weekend.
Not use any screens one hour before bedtime
Have a quiet and dimly lit place to sleep
Get plenty of natural light during the day & morning.
Avoid caffeine in tea, coffee, sports drinks and chocolate in the afternoon and evening.
Helping kids to sleep well
Some kids can fall asleep quickly while others may take a little longer. To have a good night’s sleep is all about helping kids to get to sleep, stay asleep and have enough good sleep to be ready and energized for the next day.
Setting a bedtime routine is a useful tool and helps kids wind down for the day and prepare them for sleep.
The Raising Children Network advises that for kids who may go to sleep at 7:30 pm, a bedtime routine could look like this:
6:45 pm: shower/change into pyjamas, brush teeth and go to the toilet.
7:15 pm: quiet time in their bedroom with a book and a bedtime story or quiet chat. Try to avoid screens around bedtime to help kids get to sleep easier.
7:30 pm: goodnight and lights off.
Check out Raising Children Network for 20 frequently asked questions about Children’s sleep