Sleep Needs

How Much Sleep Does My Child Need?

A child’s sleep needs vary with age and may vary a bit depending upon a child’s energy level and temperament. There is, however, a minimum amount of sleep that every child needs.  If deprived of proper sleep, many children can adapt and appear to do fine.  Parents of these children will often claim that their child just “doesn’t need much sleep,” when in fact this is an excuse for failing or avoiding to teach healthy sleep habits.  Sooner or later this child’s sleep deprivation will become apparent in negative effects like behavior problems, impulsivity, poor attitude, frequent illness, obesity, poor concentration in school, or even hyperactivity. 

The following chart from the National Sleep Foundation outlines sleep needs by age.