(NaturalPath) For the first time, the American Academy of Sleep Medicine has released official consensus recommendations for the amount of sleep needed to promote optimal health in children and teenagers to avoid the health risks of insufficient sleep.
The consensus statement includes saying infants four to 12 months old should sleep 12 to 16 hours per 24 hours (including naps) on a regular basis to promote optimal health. In the same vein, once they are a little older (one to two years old) they should sleep 11 to 14 hours per 24-hour cycle, again including naps. Once they are three years old until the age of five, the Academy says the children should sleep 10 to 13 hours per 24-hour cycle including naps on a regular basis to promote optimal health. Now they are done with naps. They note that children aged six to 12 should sleep nine to 12 hours per 24 hours on a regular basis while teenagers 13 to 18 years should sleep eight to 10 hours per 24 hours on a regular basis to promote optimal health.
One doctor on the panel said, “Sleep is essential for a healthy life, and it is important to promote healthy sleep habits in early childhood. It is especially important as children reach adolescence to continue to ensure that teens are able to get sufficient sleep.
So for your children and teens, try to get them on an appropriate sleep schedule to that they can reap the benefits of a well-rested body and mind.
Razi Berry, Founder and Publisher of Naturopathic Doctor News & Review (ndnr.com) and NaturalPath (thenatpath.com), has spent the last decade as a natural medicine advocate and marketing whiz. She has galvanized and supported the naturopathic community, bringing a higher quality of healthcare to millions of North Americans through her publications. A self-proclaimed health-food junkie and mother of two; she loves all things nature, is obsessed with organic gardening, growing fruit trees (not easy in Phoenix), laughing until she snorts, and homeschooling. She is a little bit crunchy and yes, that is her real name.