Girl and boy sleeping together

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Solutions for Married Couple Sleep Problems

Many marriage experts believe that peaceful sleeping together can keep a marriage healthy. Why do people share a bed with a spouse if they would sleep better if they didn't? Usually, the answer is because even if you don't get the best night's sleep, you find comfort and emotional intimacy in sleeping together.

If you can't sleep well with your spouse, you are not alone. Many married couples have problems sharing a bed. If you are having difficulty getting a good night's sleep because of your spouse's sleeping habits, finding a solution is essential.

Sleeping Together Statistics

According to a 2001 survey by the National Sleep Foundation, more than one in ten (12%) married Americans sleep alone. Additionally, lower marital satisfaction impacts sleep habits, according to the poll. Almost half of those with less marital satisfaction say they sleep less today than five years ago. They are also more likely to experience a sleep problem than their more happily married counterparts.

To no one's surprise, the poll also showed that there were more sleep problems in households with children. Married people with children average less sleep during the week than those without children (6.7 hours vs. 7.2 hours per night).

About 12% of married adults with children report that they typically sleep with a child, and of these, 81% report sleep problems.

Common Sleep Problems

Many situations can create sleep problems for couples. Since sleep preferences are individualized, it can be tough to share this space and time. Couples can disagree about or have different preferences for many factors, including:

  • Environment: Room temperature, sheet texture, degree of quietness in the room, size and firmness of bed, number of pillows and blankets, having a window open, sleeping with children or pets
  • Sharing: Who gets which side of the bed, sleep positions, sleep schedules, cuddling or touching, tossing and turning, getting up in the middle of the night, going to bed angry, insomnia
  • Noise: Teeth grinding, nightmares, sleepwalking, alarms, snoring

Sleep Positions

When you can sleep together, many sleep experts recommend "spooning." This is the sleeping position where people sleep nestled together like spoons. This sleeping position is believed to increase intimacy and lower stress.

But if you or your spouse doesn't care for this position, that's okay. Sometimes people worry because their spouse is sleeping with their back to them or seems to be far away in the bed. Don't jump to conclusions. Although sleep positions can be a red flag in a marriage, experts say there are no "good" or "bad" sleep positions in a marriage.​

Make Compromises

So, what do you do if you have different sleep preferences? Find ways to compromise about things like bedding, room temperature, and white noise. If that doesn't work, be realistic and consider separate bedrooms or twin beds.

Separate bedrooms or twin beds can save your marriage. When couples first start sleeping together, they are willing to sacrifice comfort to be close to their partner. After about five years or so, many people just want to have a good night's sleep again.

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Teenagers and Sleep: How Much Sleep Is Enough?

Teens love to label themselves “night owls,” trading stories of all-nighters and sleeping away an entire Saturday. Though teenagers and their sleep habits may be maddening to parents, they’re partly in response to physical changes that occur during puberty. “Teens experience a natural shift in circadian rhythm,” says Johns Hopkins sleep expert Laura Sterni, M.D. This makes it more difficult for them to fall asleep before 11 p.m. Add in early school start times and an increase in homework, extracurricular activities and sometimes a part-time job, and sleep deprivation in teens becomes common. However, says Sterni, it’s important that parents help teens do the best they can, because this age group needs more sleep than we might realize.

Why Teens Need More Sleep Than Younger Kids

So how much sleep is enough? According to Johns Hopkins pediatrician Michael Crocetti, M.D., M.P.H. , teens need 9 to 9½ hours of sleep per night—that’s an hour or so more than they needed at age 10. Why? “Teenagers are going through a second developmental stage of cognitive maturation,” explains Crocetti. Additional sleep supports their developing brain, as well as physical growth spurts. It also helps protect them from serious consequences like depression or drug use (see “The Price of Sleep Deprivation in Teens,” below).

Teenagers and Sleep: Help Them Get What They Need

Sterni and Crocetti both recommend that parents take teenagers and sleep seriously. Begin by modeling good sleep habits, such as adhering to a regular sleep schedule, cutting back on evening caffeine, and exercising regularly. They also suggest these teen-specific and time-tested tips.

Schedule a checkup. Pediatricians can educate teens on how much sleep is enough, recommend healthy sleep habits, and screen them for common teen sleep disorders, including sleep apnea, insomnia and circadian rhythm disorders.

Start the day in sunshine. Having breakfast outside or by a sunny window helps regulate the body’s biological clock, making it easier for teens to wake up in the morning and drift off at night.

Encourage the connection. When your teen is well-rested, ask how he felt that day while taking a test or playing a sport. Help him come to the conclusion that sleep improves his outlook—and help him realize how much sleep is enough.

Tie good sleep to car privileges. Sleep deprivation in teens can lead to accidents. “I tell my teenage son he can’t drive to school in the morning if he’s not getting enough sleep,” says Crocetti.

Help teens rethink their schedule. If your teen typically starts homework after evening activities, help him find an earlier time to get started. Ultra-busy schedules may require paring down.

Encourage afternoon naps. Tired teens may benefit from a 30- to 45-minute nap before dinner. This is a better fix for sleep deprivation in teens than sleeping-in, which throws off their body’s sleep cycle.

Ban tech from the bedroom. Using tech at night not only cuts into teens’ sleep time, it also exposes them to a type of light that suppresses the body’s production of the sleep-inducing hormone melatonin, making it tougher to fall asleep.

Encourage schools to move toward later start times. Many middle and high schools are exploring the idea of starting school around 8:30 a.m.—the time recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics. Talk with your local school board about this issue.

Watch the summer shift. It’s normal for teenagers to want to shift their sleep schedule during the summer. Just make sure they don’t push bedtime too far past the one they had during the school year, advises Sterni. Teens whose schedules shift significantly may find it more difficult to return to an appropriate school sleep schedule and experience problems such as moodiness and excessive daytime sleepiness at the start of the school year. Those with significant shifts in their sleep schedule may need to see a sleep specialist to get back on track in September.

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The Couples Who Sleep ‘Together’ Over Videochat


Keeping a camera running overnight can provide a sense of comfort—or at least a confirmation of fidelity.

By Kate Cray

Kaci Alvarez, a 20-year-old journalism student living in Ontario, Canada, used to watch YouTube videos before going to bed. Her ears ring, and she found that the sounds of some online videos, especially the voice of a YouTuber named Ryan Klepacs, relieved the din. Two years ago, after Alvarez tuned into a live video Q&A that Klepacs hosted for fans, the two met, and they quickly started dating despite living hours apart by car. One evening, while they were Skyping, Alvarez decided to go to sleep, and Klepacs did the same, without ending the call. When they woke up the next day, the videochat was still running.

They found the experience so comforting that they slept “together” over videochat every night while they were living in two different cities, making them part of a small but ardent group of couples, many in long-distance relationships, who rely on the practice to maintain intimacy while apart. Having a camera running through the night (or even just during a nap) might strike some as invasive, but the people I spoke with said the practice made sense to them: Couples who live in the same place can share a bed, so why shouldn't they be able to do the same, albeit virtually?

Read: The new long-distance relationship

Couples remotely share a bed for many reasons, ranging from the pragmatic to the romantic. For one thing, it comes with the obvious benefit of confirming a partner’s fidelity. “You can’t cheat on me while I’m watching, basically,” said Krissy Celess, a 24-year-old rapper and salon owner in Miami whose boyfriend lives nearby, in Fort Lauderdale, but travels a lot for work. The routine can also be soothing. Many people I spoke with slept over videochat every night; some said they couldn’t fall asleep without their partner on the screen. When Alvarez visited her parents, who have limited Wi-Fi service, she and Klepacs conserved data by not videochatting during the day, so that they could fall asleep together at night. “It was mandatory for us,” Klepacs told me.

The absence of touch may make videochatting less physically intimate than sharing a bed, but simulated proximity can create a different type of intimacy: While one might share a bed with a one-night stand, one would presumably never fall asleep with a stranger on FaceTime. Almost all the people I talked with stressed that they could sense their partner’s presence through the screen. Rachel Griffin, a 22-year-old security guard at a Walmart in Orlando, Florida, told me that videochatting overnight with her now ex-boyfriend helped her get through a motel-room stay during a cross-country move. “I didn’t feel lonely,” she said. “I could wake up in the middle of the night, and I knew he was there.”

This sense of togetherness can be especially powerful for long-distance couples, who miss out on sharing many small, day-to-day interactions. As Pia, a 20-year-old working at an animal hospital near Jacksonville, Florida, dealt with anxiety, the constancy of nocturnal videochatting steadied her. “He was always just there,” she said of her significant other, a land surveyor who lives in New Jersey. (Pia asked to be identified by only her first name to protect her privacy.)

In some ways, sleeping over videochat can be very similar to sharing a bed. A significant other’s snoring might still be audible (though a call offers the option of lowering the volume). Alarm clocks still blare at early hours.

But at other times, technology’s limitations are all too perceptible: Data plans can be expensive. Wi-Fi is often spotty. Sometimes reaching your partner is impossible. Max Edgington, a 25-year-old who briefly lived in a small town in northern Canada, avoided buying Wi-Fi for months, instead carefully perching his phone on the windowsill, where, from the right position, it could allow him to barely access a local public network and videochat with his partner, who lived just north of the U.S.-Canada border. If his phone slipped, he lost connection.

Even when nothing goes wrong, the technology itself might not be ideal for getting high-quality sleep. H. Craig Heller, a biology professor at Stanford University who studies sleep, told me that on one hand, he would expect having a partner on the phone to be comforting, and thus helpful for dozing off. But on the other, he noted, the blue light from a screen could make falling asleep right after a pre-bedtime videochat harder.

Sharing a bed over videochat could scan as a hollow simulation of occupying the same physical space, but despite the hiccups and limitations, the couples I spoke with considered it a way to overcome the challenges of being geographically separated. Jeff Hancock, a Stanford communications professor and the founder of the school’s social-media lab, told me that sleeping over videochat is a means of indicating one’s commitment. It “signals that I’m going to spend my time and energy and technology on being with you,” he said. And although a screen cannot provide the same warmth as a body, the strength of that shared devotion can help sustain a relationship.

Phenomena like this are new, results of advances in communication technology. From letters to telephone calls to videochats, forging intimacy over distance has grown considerably easier. But as much as some couples enjoy falling asleep together over videochat, every person I interviewed stressed that physically being together was undeniably preferable to the virtual alternative. Some, such as Klepacs and Alvarez, had recently closed the distance in their relationship and no longer needed to rely on technology each night. “When we sleep in the same bed together, it’s so much nicer—oh, my God,” Klepacs said.

Still, there’s something powerful, beautiful even, about the technologically mediated experience. Tim McArthur, a 21-year-old photographer and videographer in Boulder, Colorado, told me that when he would videochat overnight with his now ex-girlfriend, the microphone would pick up her every breath and rustle in her quiet room. Coming from someone he knew so well, the sounds became imbued with meaning. Her breath would hitch and quicken during nightmares, but at other times it would slow down, and he would know that she was in a calm, deep sleep.

When You Find a Cute Girl Sleeping Next to You

15 Couples’ Sleeping Positions and What They Mean

The way someone sleeps can say a lot about them as a person. However, what happens when you add a second person to the mattress?
As we drift off into deep sleep, our subconscious takes over. The way our bodies respond to our partners can provide insight into our relationships. Whether you enjoy being tangled up with your significant other or prefer to keep your personal space, your preferred sleep position can help gauge the state of your relationship beyond what happens while you’re conscious.
Here, we cover 15 couples’ sleeping positions and what they mean. We also surveyed over 1,000 people to see what positions are preferred most when people share a bed with their partners. Things are about to get personal.

1. Spooning

A woman sleeps with her back pressed to a man's stomach. Illustration. 
A classic position, spooning is when one partner takes a protective, intimate stance behind the other as the second person leans their back or behind against them. It’s a skin-on-skin position that provides plenty of emotional and physical comfort. If you like this position, chances are you’re either in a brand new relationship or that the two of you can’t get enough of each other.
Big Spoon
As the big spoon, you are the one forming a protective embrace behind your partner. If you prefer to be the big spoon, you are most likely a very giving partner and want to comfort your significant other.
Little Spoon
As the little spoon, you like the feeling of being safe and protected by your partner. In terms of your relationship, you might also need some extra TLC and nurturing.

2. Chasing Spoon

A woman sleeps curled up on her side while a man has only his arm touching her torso. Illustration. 
This is a variation of the spooning position. Rather than the two of you spooning tightly in the center, “chase spooning” occurs where one person shifts to one side of the bed and their partner follows, or “chases” them. The partner being chased usually prefers a log or fetal position to sleep, while the “chaser” sleeps in a yearner position.
This could mean one of two things. Either the partner being chased likes to play hard to get, or they are retreating and want more space from their “chaser”. This might also be a sign that their needs aren’t being met. The “chaser” could also be wanting more attention from their partner.

3. Loose Spoon

A woman sleeps curled up on her side while another woman lightly touches her back. Illustration. 
Whereas partners in new relationships tend to favor spooning, couples who have dated for a longer amount of time often don’t need the novelty of constant body-to-body contact. “Loose spooning” sees both individuals moving to a more spaced out position for better quality sleep. You both have been together long enough to feel a strong level of trust without needing the reassurance of constant touch.
If you’re the big spoon, this position essentially means that you can be counted on at any time, but you know that you and your little spoon like the extra comfort that comes with giving each other a little space.

4. Back to Back

A couple sleeps facing opposite directions with their spines touching. Illustration. 
Those who fall asleep with contact along the spine show a balance of closeness and independence. If your bottoms touch — also called “moon landing,” it means you both want to stay sexually connected while still feeling comfortable facing away from each other. If you prefer this position, chances are you very comfortable and relaxed with each other. The two of you might have also fought recently, but your willingness to touch means the relationship is still okay.

5. Front to Front

A couple sleeps on their sides facing each other and with one arm around the other. Illustration. 
A slight variation on being fully intertwined, front-to-front has both partners facing each other. with their heads at the same level. They may also be slightly touching, with their arms draped across each other. This intimate position communicates that the two individuals are like-minded and there is a good overall atmosphere in the relationship.

6. Sweetheart Cradle

A woman sleeps with her torso resting on her partner's torso. The partner wraps her arms around her. Illustration. 
This sweet, nurturing posture has one partner resting their head on the other partner’s chest, with their legs intertwined as they hold each other close. A couple who prefers this sleep position has a high level of trust and teamwork between them. This snuggling position shows protection and romance and is favored by many new couples or those who have rekindled their romance.

7. Head on Other’s Shoulder

A woman rests her head on her partner's shoulder. Illustration. 
Also known as the “shingles” position, this position has both partners sleeping on their backs, with one partner resting his or her head on the other’s shoulder. It shows a high level of comradeship, where one partner allows the other to play “protector” and nurture them. This position indicates understanding and confidence in the relationship.

8. Leg Hug

A couple sleeps with one of the partner's legs crossed on top of the other partner's leg. Illustration. 
If one person has a leg or feet touching their partner, it could mean that the person is craving a sexual or emotional connection. A pair of tangled legs shows that your lives are intertwined and that you exist as a unit.

9. Intertwined

A couple sleeps with arms and legs intertwinded as they share a pillow. Illustration. 
Being fully intertwined with a lover is an incredibly close and romantic position. This position is popular among new couples, and can sometimes be a transitory pose before or after a couple has intimacy.
If you and your partner just started dating, this position screams young love between the two of you. Some couples maintain this throughout their relationship, but this can potentially signify that these two individuals are dependent on each other.

10. Unraveling Tangle

Partners sleep on separate pillows and a small space between them with their arms crading each other lightly. Illustration. 
This position starts with the two partners tangled up together before unraveling to a more comfortable sleep position after several minutes or so. It allows the couple the best of both worlds and shows a balance of intimacy and independence between the two individuals.

11. Both on Stomach

A couple sleeps on separate sides of the bed on their stomachs. Illustration. 
A couple that sleeps on their stomachs could be struggling with angst and fear in the relationship. If the two are not touching at all, it could further indicate anxiety or lack of sexual trust. If you and your partner are falling asleep in this position, it might be a good time for you two to have a sit-down to talk about your relationship.

12. Space Hog

One partner stretched across the majority of the bed, while the other partner sleeps in a very small section of the bed. Illustration. 
This position has one partner assuming the “starfish”, where he or she is sprawled out and taking up the majority of the mattress space while their partner takes a secondary role. If the starfish partner begins to push their partner off, it is an indicator that they are selfish in the relationship.
In addition, if one partner both takes up space and places themselves higher than the other, they tend to see themselves as more dominant and confident. It may be good for the couple to have a frank conversation about the power dynamic in their relationship.

13. No Contact, Back to Back

A couple sleeps on opposite sides of the bed with their backs to each other without touching. Illustration 
Not touching each other isn’t a bad thing by any means —in fact, a couple’s willingness to sleep apart is a sign of strong independence.
Couples who sleep back-to-back but are not touching are usually both connected and self-sufficient. Also known as “liberty lovers”, this sleep position shows a strong level of security. However, if the two of you are sleeping on opposite ends, it may instead indicate your desire to be more separate. This could also be a sign you should upgrade to a larger mattress size.

14. No Contact, Front to Front

Two partners sleep on opposite sides of the bed on their sides with their fronts facing each other without touching. Illustration. 
If the two of you are facing each other while sleeping but don’t touch, this may signify that you need something more in your relationship. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, as you can take some positive steps to bridge the gap.

15. Pet Barrier

A couple lays on opposite sides of the bed with a happy dog sleeping between them. Illustration. 
Sharing a bed with your dog or cat is becoming increasingly common these days. For some couples, placing a pet in between them can serve as a way to get some extra space at night as well as reinforce the strong bond between you and your pet. However, it might also mean that the two of you are avoiding something in your relationship. Perhaps you may want to consider talking with your partner or consider getting a separate dog bed.

How Americans Prefer to Sleep Survey Results

Now that we have covered the different variations of partnered sleep positions, which one do most couples prefer? To find out, we ran a Google survey of 1,000 Americans on how they prefer to sleep with their significant other.
According to our survey, 46% of American couples prefer to sleep without touching each other. This suggests that either many couples feel comfortable in their relationship or that they prioritize comfort and sleep quality over touch. “No contact” was favored almost equally between men and women, but less favored by younger couples aged 18 to 24 compared to other age groups. 
A chart showing the following data: "How Americans Sleep: 46% sleep without contact, 25% sleep int he spooning position, 15% sleep back-to-back, 8% sleep intertwinded, and 6% sleep face to face." Illustration.
Spooning is the next preferred sleep position among couples. While the spooning dynamic between couples reflected usual conventions, a significant 30% of women prefer to be the “big spoon” and 24% of men prefer to be the “little spoon”. 
A chart showing preferenced within the spooning sleep position. 70% of men prefer to be the big spoon, compared to 30% of women. 24% of men prefer to be the little spoon as compared to 76% of women. Illustration.
Couples who sleep back to back were the next largest group in our survey. This position was favored by older couples —those who are over 25 years of age are at least twice as likely to sleep back to back than those who are less than 25 years of age. Finally, when it comes to sleeping intertwined, we found that men were 13% more likely than women to prefer this position.
Since body language is often informed by the subconscious, a couple’s sleep position can serve as a reflection of their conscious selves. However, the way you and your partner sleep certainly won’t make or break your relationship. Rather, you should use this guide as a way to help you communicate your sleeping preferences to your partner.
If you and your significant other are looking for the most comfortable sleep, a queen mattress might just be the ideal couples’ mattress. For those who want more space to add more love, a king mattress is ideal for sleeping with a child or a pet.
The statistics on preferred couple sleep positions came from a survey facilitated by Google Surveys. The sample consisted of 1,000 Americans and was conducted during May 2019. Post-stratification weighting was employed in order to attain a sample that is representative of the population.


Sleeping girl together boy and

Children often sleep alongside parents or siblings as they are growing up. This practice is termed “co-sleeping”, and typically, it occurs on a nightly basis for an extended period of time: weeks, months, or in some cases, years. Many families find co-sleeping a good way to spend time together and bond as a family, or to reduce their child’s stress around falling asleep or waking during the night. It is also popular among breastfeeding mothers during their child’s infancy.

When should my child be sleeping in his own bed?

While sharing a bed might ease pressures on families while children are very young, the habit of co-sleeping can pose problems as children mature. By the time their children are 2 – 2 1/2 years old, most parents will be eager to have them sleep easily through the night in their own beds.

Why should my child learn to sleep alone?

Encouraging independent sleep in children as they mature is important for several reasons:

  • Extended co-sleeping can discourage children from achieving what’s known as “night time independence”. Children with night time independence are confident that they can fall asleep on their own, and know-how to comfort themselves if they are stressed or anxious around sleep – key steps in healthy emotional development.
  • Frequently, pre-school and school-aged children have fitful sleep cycles. Having a child kicking, tossing and turning in their bed can interrupt parents’ sleep, leading to exhaustion and stress throughout the day.
  • Parental intimacy is often compromised when their children sleep with them. This can have a detrimental effect on a couple’s relationship, affecting communication and physical closeness.

How do I break the cycle of co-sleeping with my school-aged child?

If your child refuses to sleep alone, or wakes up crying during the night, and only stops when you are near, he might be experiencing separation anxiety at night. This pattern is also known as “night-time separation anxiety”. Night-time separation anxiety is common among children up to 3 years old, but older children can experience it as well.

Here are some things you can do to ease nighttime separation anxiety and help your child sleep alone:

  • Develop a regular daily routine. The same waking, nap time, and bedtimes will help your child feel secure, which can help them fall asleep more easily. Have a bedtime routine – for example, a bath followed by storytime and a brief cuddle. Consistency and clear communication are key.
  • Keep lights dim in the evening and expose your child’s room to light, preferably natural, as he wakes. These light patterns stimulate healthy sleep-wake cycles.
  • Avoid putting your child to sleep with too many toys in his bed, which can distract him from sleeping. One or two “transitional objects”, like a favourite blanket or toy, however, can help a child get to sleep more easily.
  • Don’t use bedtime as a threat. Model healthy sleep behaviour for your child, and communicate that sleep is an enjoyable and healthy part of life.
  • Avoid stimulants like chocolate, sweet drinks, TV and computer use before bedtime. Children ideally need to relax and “wind down” for at least 1 hour before bedtime.

Some other strategies to reduce your child’s dependence on co-sleeping include:

  • Wean your child from your bed over time. For example, you might plan to spend part of the night on a mattress on the floor of your child’s bedroom or sleep with him for a few hours in his bed before returning to your own.
  • Use a baby monitor to help a child who wakes at night communicate with you or your partner. This will also reduce the likelihood of him walking to your bedroom. If your child communicates to you through the monitor, visit him in his bed to reduce disturbance.
  • Use rewards, such asThe Quirky Kid Tickets to measure improvements in your child’s independent sleeping. For example, a partial night spent in his own bed will earn him a yellow ticket, while a full night sleeping alone will get him a red one. The child might collect tickets to exchange them for a prize.

We offer a range of services, workshops and individualised consultations to support children with sleeping difficulties. Please contact us for more information.

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Kids and Sleep

Sleep — or lack of it — is common concern for parents. As new parents quickly learn, the well-being of everyone in the household can depend on how well their baby sleeps. And when they’re older, kids who don’t get enough sleep can have trouble paying attention, mood swings, behavior problems, and leaning problems.

What Happens During Sleep?

As we sleep, our brains move between two types of sleep — non-REM and REM (rapid eye movement) sleep. Together, the stages of non-REM sleep and REM sleep make up a sleep cycle. Babies spend more time in REM sleep and their sleep cycles are shorter than adults. Time spent in REM sleep decreases and sleep cycles get longer as kids get older. By the time kids start school, one complete sleep cycle lasts about 90 minutes, which is similar to an adult's.

Stage 1 and stage 2 non-REM sleep are light sleep stages:

  • A person can wake up easily.
  • Eye movements slow down, heart and breathing rates slow down, and body temperature decreases.

Stage 3 non-REM sleep is deep sleep:

  • It's harder to wake someone up. When awakened, a person often will feel groggy and confused.
  • Night terrors, sleepwalking, and bed-wetting can happen during this stage.
  • This is the most refreshing sleep stage. It’s during this stage that the body releases hormones needed for growth and development.

In the final, REM stage of the sleep cycle:

  • The eyes move quickly under the eyelids, breathing gets faster, and the heart beats faster. You can’t move your arms or legs during REM sleep.
  • This is when we have our most vivid dreams.
  • REM sleep is important for learning and memory. 

How Much Sleep Do Kids Need?

How much sleep kids need varies by age. While every child is different, experts recommend:

  • infants (0–3 months): 14–17 hours, including naps
  • infants (4–12 months: 12–16 hours, including naps
  • toddlers (1–2 years): 11–14 hours, including naps
  • preschool (3–5 years): 10–13 hours, including naps
  • school-age (6–13 years): 9–12 hours
  • teens (14–17 years): 8–10 hours

How Can I Tell if My Child Isn’t Getting Enough Sleep?

A child who isn’t getting enough sleep may:

  • fall asleep during the day
  • be hyperactive (especially younger children)
  • have trouble paying attention
  • struggle with school work  
  • be cranky, whiny, irritable, or moody
  • have behavior problems

What Can Help Kids Sleep?

For kids of all ages, set up a bedtime routine that encourages good sleep habits. These tips can help kids ease into a good night's sleep:

  • Stick to a regular bedtime. You can give your kids a heads-up 30 minutes and then 10 minutes beforehand.
  • Encourage older kids and teens to set a bedtime that allows for the full hours of sleep needed at their age. A bedtime routine could include washing up and brushing teeth, reading a book, or listening to quiet music.
  • Turn off all screens (TV, computers, phones, tablets, and video games) at least 1 hour before bedtime. Consider removing all devices from your child’s bedroom.

More About Sleep by Age

Learn more about sleep as your child grows:


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