The Irish proverb “A good laugh and a long sleep are the best cures in the doctor’s book” fairly sums up the importance of having enough sleep. But what do sleep experts really say about how much sleep is ideal? Turns out, it isn’t just one magic number.
Sleep experts debunk the 8-hour sleep rule, as there are a number of factors that affect the amount of sleep a person needs. Age is one of these factors.
Here’s what the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says the amount of sleep people should get depending on how old they are:
How Much Sleep Should Babies and Children Get?
Sleep experts have the following recommendations to ensure the optimal growth and development of people within the pediatric population:
- Newborns: 14-17 hours
- Babies: 12-16 hours
- Toddlers: 11-14 hours
- Preschoolers: 10-13 hours
- Children (6 to 13 years old): 9-12 hours
- Teens (14 to 17 years): 8–10 hours
These recommendations include nap times, which are particularly critical for infants, toddlers and preschoolers.
How Much Sleep Is Enough for Adults?
For adults, sleep experts have the following recommendations:
- Ages 18 to 60 – 7 or more hours
- Ages 61 to 64 – 7-9 hours
- Ages 65 plus – 7-8 hours
Whichever age category you belong, if you frequently fall below these recommendations, you could be at a higher risk for serious diseases, such as diabetes and cardiovascular problems (hypertension, heart disease and stroke). In addition, chronic sleep deprivation wreaks havoc on your mental acuity, leaves you irritable, and makes you susceptible to accidents at work and on the road.
Tips for Sleeping More and Better
Experts have done considerable research into creating a set of guidelines and tips that are aimed at enhancing sleep hygiene. There is significant scientific evidence that suggests that the following strategies can provide long-term solutions for people struggling with inadequate quantity of sleep.
- Go to bed at the same time each night.
- Create downtime before you retire by shutting down the TV, computer and phone, and instead, try reading or listening to soft music.
- Get some exercise during the day.
- Avoid caffeine alcohol and heavy meals before you go to bed.
- Make your bedroom conducive to sleep.
- Daytime naps should not be longer than 20 minutes.
Sleep Medicine Expert in Weatherford, TX
If you’re dealing with sleep deprivation, consider consulting Dr. Olusegun Oseni here at the Lung & Sleep Specialists of North Texas.
A board-certified internal medicine physician specializing in sleep medicine and pulmonary care, Dr. Olusegun Oseni is passionate about helping people get the restful sleep they need to live healthy and fully functional lives. Our state-of-the-art Sleep Center is accredited by the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, and we utilize evidence-based methods to accurately assess and treat sleep disorders.
To arrange a visit with Dr. Olusegun Oseni, contact our staff now at (817) 594-9993, or submit an appointment request by filling out this convenient form. A good night’s sleep can be yours, and we’re here to help you achieve it!