A new study has found that many parents have a poor understanding of how much sleep their children need. We look into what it found, including how much sleep your child should be getting.
What does the study show?
The study from the University of Otago, New Zealand, revealed that one in four parents think their children need less sleep than experts recommend and one in five think they need more.
The report also revealed that parents say things like screen time, late meal times and children playing interrupt all stall their planned bedtimes.
When researchers asked parents questions about how much sleep different aged children needed, almost half answered incorrectly.
They say mothers often have less knowledge about sleep than other areas of child development.
Parents of younger children were more likely to give correct answers about how much sleep their children need and to report fewer barriers to bedtimes.
Parents need to know how important it is for children to have sufficient sleep, and that they can support this by ensuring their child has a healthy and consistent sleep routine.
Small changes to the sleep environment or sleep routine can lead to big improvements in children’s sleep that lead to improved mood and health.
How much sleep should children be getting?
The report from this study did not give details of the recommended amounts of sleep for children by age.
However, The Sleep Foundation recently produced this chart to guide parents:
Babies and children are different. We spend a lot of time patting ourselves on the back when the easy babies behave like themselves, and a lot of time agonizing and assigning blame when the more difficult kids run true to form.