Transitioning kids to back-to-school sleep schedule

Published: Aug. 2, 2022 at 6:19 PM CDT
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BISMARCK, N.D. (KFYR) - It’s a dreaded transition for parents and students alike — getting kids back on a regular sleep schedule as the new school year rolls around.

Studies have shown that kids who regularly get enough sleep are better behaved, have a better memory, have an easier time paying attention, and have better overall mental and physical health. Not getting enough sleep can lead to high blood pressure, obesity and even depression.

According to pediatricians, preparing your child for a back-to-school sleep schedule ten days to two weeks early is ideal.

Doctors suggest progressively waking up your child 15 minutes earlier and putting them to bed 15 minutes earlier each day to help their bodies naturally adjust to their new sleep schedule for the school year.

And once they adjust to the new schedule, consistency is key.

Here are some tips from pediatricians:

  1. Limit screen time before bed.
  2. Maintain a soothing bedtime routine, including quiet time for reading, hearing a bedtime story, or bath or shower.
  3. No caffeine six hours or less before bedtime.

How much sleep do kids need?

According to the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, kids ages 3-5 should get ten to thirteen hours including naps, kids ages 6-12 years old should get nine to twelve hours, and kids ages 13-18 get eight to ten hours of sleep.

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