How Many Hours of Sleep Do You Need by Age?

How Much Sleep Do You Need? | Everyday Health

Sleep is a daily requirement for all humans of all ages. When you sleep, your body recharges a battery. Sleep helps you rejuvenate your mind and body and is essential for day-to-day activities. However, as humans age, the amount of sleep they need changes, which begs the question, how many hours of sleep do you need by age? What time should you go to sleep? And what causes a lack of sleep?

Hours of Sleep by Age

According to CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), there are different sleep requirements by age. For example, Newborns (0–3 months) sleep time by age is 14–17 hours of sleep. Infants (4–12 months), on the other hand, need 12–16 hours, which should include naps. Additionally, toddlers (2 years) need 11–14 hours while also needing naps. Preschoolers (3–5 years) require 10–13 hours of sleep with naps. As kids grow older, they stop needing naps. Such as School Age kids (6–12 years) whose sleep time by age is 9–12 hours without naps. Teens (13–18 years) require 8–10 hours of sleep, whilst adults’ sleep requirements by age 18–60 years are 7+ hours per night. 61–64-year-olds require 7–9 hours of sleep and 65+ years olds need 7–8 hours.

What Time Should You Go to Sleep?

The time you should go to bed depends on your sleep requirements by age and by the person. To decide when to sleep, you must decide when to wake up and count backward. For example, a teenager that must wake up at 6 A.M. for school should sleep at 8-10 P.M. so one gets 8-10 hours of sleep. However, this is not true for every single person, as everyone has a circadian rhythm. 

A circadian rhythm is essentially the body’s alarm clock. The circadian rhythm is a natural system in our body that gets our body to bed depending on various factors. Some of these factors are environmental, such as sunlight and temperature, and internal factors such as food. Your circadian rhythm dictates when to sleep, how much to sleep, and whether you are an early bird or a night owl. 

What Causes a Lack of Sleep?

Lack of sleep-in children is mostly purely environmental and caused by disturbances. However, sleep deprivation in teens and adults is more common. For teenagers, sleep deprivation is caused by the inability to multitask, sleep anxiety, and stress. Most teens have to juggle school, activities, social life, and social media. The stress of school, grades, and social life causes teenagers to stress that results in overthinking, which in hand results in sleep anxiety and insomnia. Additionally, adults face the same problems with sleep due to their high responsibilities. Many adults have to deal with building a family and having a job. This produces extreme stress that leads to sleep anxiety, insomnia, and sleep deprivation. 

As for elderlies, their sleeping patterns change as they start having lighter sleep with more naps. Seniors require almost the same amount of sleep as younger adults but do not get as much quality sleep. This is caused by illnesses one attains as one grows older, the inability to sleep easily, and waking up frequently throughout the night.

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