How Much Sleep Should We Really Get?

Sleep: It’s something that you probably wish you could get more of. Approximately 40 percent of Americans get less than seven hours of sleep per night, according to a recent Gallup poll. So, how much sleep is needed before it effects you? Find out below, along with some of the factors that affect sleep in both children and adults.

Newborns
Recommended Hours of Sleep: 14-16 hours
Minimum Amount Needed: 11 hours

Babies will most likely not stick to your sleep schedule. They tend to sleep in only three to four hour increments. This is because babies cannot fall into deep REM sleep cycles. Chances are, you won’t be able to follow the recommendations provided below.

Infants (4-11 Months)
Recommended Hours of Sleep: 12-15 hours
Minimum Amount Needed: 10 Hours

As newborns become infants, they can begin sleeping more during the night, and less during the day. While most infants will eventually begin sleeping through the night, there could be nights every once in a while where they go back to their old ways. This age is a great time to establish a bedtime routine.

Toddlers
Recommended Hours of Sleep: 11-14 hours
Minimum Amount Needed: 9 hours

Sleeping is not so easy for toddlers. They can suffer from separation anxiety and discomfort while sleeping, which can wake them up. Set limits to bedtime routines and be firm with rules regarding bedtime.

Pre-Schoolers
Recommended Hours of Sleep: 10-13 hours
Minimum Amount Needed: 8 hours

This is around the time where nightmares begin to come into the picture. While they are sometimes unavoidable, consider developing a relaxing bedtime pattern to make nightmares minimal. If you find that your child is having many nightmares, see a doctor and discuss your concerns with him or her.

Children
Recommended Hours of Sleep: 9-11 hours
Minimum Amount Needed: 7 hours

Children become more like adults, where they begin to lead busy lives with extracurricular activities, favorite television shows, and homework. Ensure that they are not using phones, or watching TV close to bedtime, as it could limit the amount of sleep they get.

Teenagers
Recommended Hours of Sleep: 8-10 hours
Minimum Amount Needed: 7 hours

Improper sleep as a teenager can lead to increases in acne, and limit ability to pay attention in school. Teenagers may also introduce more caffeine into diets and have a hectic schedule. With an early start for school, it’s important for teenagers to get to bed at a decent hour.

Adults
Recommended Hours of Sleep: 7-9 hours
Minimum Amount Needed: 6 hours

Approximately 50 to 70 million Americans suffer from sleeping disorders, according to the CDC.

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