How long should a baby sleep? And a child?

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Will he get enough sleep? But how long should he sleep? When it comes to sleep and babies (and then babies and teenagers) there are always many doubts. Scientists fromAmerican Academy of Sleep Medicine, based on the recommendations issued by the American Academy of Pediatrics published in the Journal of clinical sleep medicine, have established the number of hours required for each age group.

"Children and adolescents sleep too little," he said Stuart Chan, co-author of the paper, "at the expense of proper memory and learning development".

Also Giampietro Chiamenti, Chairman of the Federation of Paesena pediatricians, agrees: "Many children suffer from sleep problems and sleep poorly increases the risk of obesity, diabetes, depression, self-harm".

Here's how long babies need to sleep to stay healthy:

4 months - 1 year

Between 4 months and 1 year of age, between 12 and 16 hours of sleep per day are recommended.

Generally up to 12 months, babies sleep without problems, but it can also happen that some have difficulties.

If the baby cries at night, it is best to approach calmly and calm him down with a light massage. It is advisable to always keep the lights dim and the tone of the voice low.

1 2-years

Between 1 and 2 years of age, babies need about 11-14 hours of sleep each day. This is not always taken for granted: in fact, around 12 months, babies may have difficulty sleeping.

This behavior is caused by separation anxiety, in fact, the baby feels a feeling of discomfort when the mother goes away: it is important to reassure him.

Avoid making your baby tired in the hours before falling asleep, as this can lead to increased levels of adrenaline, a hormone that hinders sleep. It is also advisable to avoid drinks that contain exciting substances, such as coffee, tea.


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3 6-years

In preschool age, the child should sleep 10 to 13 hours a day. It is advisable to put the baby to bed at fixed times and always wake him up at the same time, even on weekends.

Also, never associate sleep with punishment, never say "if you're not good I'll put you to bed". Health Minister Beatrice Lorenzin also commented on the lack of sleep: "We make children sleep too little, they often go to bed late and we have imposed dream-wake times calibrated on the needs of adults".

6 12-years

At school age, the little one should get 9-12 hours of sleep a day. With the arrival in the first grade, even children who have always slept well may have some difficulty falling asleep, due to the anxiety of change.

This is a transitory phase, which stabilizes in a short time. It is very important that the child does not have a TV or computer in the room.

13 18-years

It is the period of adolescence, during which it is necessary to sleep about 8-10 hours a day. "An indication that is not always easy to respect because the biological sleep rhythm of children is different from that of children and adults," Chiamenti said.

Teenagers don't fall asleep before 23pm. In fact, hormonal changes that occur in their bodies alter the sleep-wake rhythm. Teenagers fall asleep later.

To give them balance, pay attention to coffee, alcohol, smoking. Better to avoid loud music, the computer, studying just before bed.

  • sleep
  • sleep duration
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