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How Much Sleep?

by Sue Hubbard, M.D.

With school back in session I keep hearing “how much sleep does my child, tween or teen need?” The answer is probably more than you think. Elementary age kids still need 10 to 11 hours of sleep a night, while those teens need about 8.5 hours. With all of the activities after school and then the homework load I often hear, “there just isn’t enough time to get to bed on time”. But more important than soccer, piano, or dance etc. is a good night’s sleep.

Insufficient sleep has been correlated with a multitude of issues from focusing and overall school performance, to obesity and even to further sleep related problems. But parents must believe in the importance of sleep to keep their kids on the right track. Sometimes that means dropping an after school activity in order to fit in homework, family dinner and a little wind down time before bed. It may be a tough to enforce, but one of the best parts of the day is bedtime!

That’s your daily dose. We’ll chat tomorrow!

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