Kids’ sleep guidelines spell out shut-eye guidance by age

CHICAGO (AP) – The American Academy of Sleep Medicine is releasing for the first time guidelines for how much shut-eye kids should be getting.

But the group is telling parents not to lose too much sleep themselves over those recommendations.

The guidelines released today encompass recommendations the American Academy of Pediatrics has made different times for different ages. And they’re based on a review of scientific evidence on sleep duration and health.

The guidelines recommend 12 to 16 hours of sleep, including naps, for infants 4 months to 12 months; 11 to 14 hours including naps for children ages 1- to 2 years; and 9 to 12 hours for children ages 6 to 12 years. Teens 13 to 18 years old should be getting 8 to 10 hours of sleep.

The American Academy of Sleep Medicine says adequate sleep is linked with improved attention, behavior, learning, mental and physical health at every stage of a child’s growth. And it says insufficient sleep increases risks for obesity, diabetes, accidents, depression and in teens, self-harm including suicide attempts.

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