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Kids sleep guidelines

These guidelines provide a reference for what is considered normal sleep habits for children at different ages. Individual children may need more or less sleep than the guidelines suggest. If you have any concerns about your child's sleeping patterns, we recommend that you consult a paediatrician.

Kids sleep guidelines

These guidelines provide a reference for what is considered normal sleep habits for children at different ages. Individual children may need more or less sleep than the guidelines suggest. If you have any concerns about your child's sleeping patterns, we recommend that you consult a paediatrician.
The most commonly asked question by parents everywhere

How much should my child be sleeping?

While there may be individual variations in how much children need to sleep, the greatest determining factor is age.
These guidelines can be used as a target, while understanding that a healthy amount of sleep may vary between children, or from day to day.

These guidelines are sourced from

"Recommended Amount of Sleep for Pediatric Populations: A Consensus Statement of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine",

published in 2016 in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine. These ranges are for total sleep including at night and during naps.

It is estimated that 25% of children younger than 5 experience some type of sleep problem, and that up to 50% of children will experience sleep issues. Sleep disruptions can have a profound negative impact on the child as well as the child's family. Below are guidelines for how much your child should be sleeping at various ages.

How much should children be sleeping according to their age group?

Infants (4 months to 12 months)
12 to 16 hours of sleep per 24 hours (including naps). Infants need a lot of sleep to support the substantive growth of the first year of life. Among other things, sleep supports brain growth and development. It is normal for infants to nap several times during the day, and the naps may account for up to 3-4 hours of sleep in total per day.
Toddlers (1 to 2 years)
11 to 14 hours of sleep per 24 hours (including naps). The nap frequency of toddlers is decreased compared to infants. During this age span, it is normal for toddlers to take 1-2 naps during the day, which can account for 1-2 hours of daily sleep. Older toddlers may only take a shorter afternoon nap, although the need for sleep varies from child to child.
Pre-school children (3 to 5 years)
10 to 13 hours of sleep per 24 hours (including naps). During this period, naps may decrease in frequency and length. Older pre-schoolers may stop napping on a regular basis.
School-age children (6 to 12 years)
9 to 12 hours of sleep per 24 hours. Younger school-age children typically need more sleep compared to older school-age children in middle school or approaching high school. However, the individual need for sleep may vary significantly in this age group. At the onset of puberty the need for sleep and sleeping patterns change markedly.
Teenagers (13 to 18 years) 
8 to 10 hours of sleep per 24 hours. Sleep is highly important for teenagers, as it supports mental, physical, social, and emotional development. Getting enough sleep is also vital for the attention, memory and thought processes required by school and for for academic achievement. A lack of sleep in teens is associated with an elevated risk of accidental injury and negative health outcomes.
The second most commonly asked question by parents everywhere

How can I help my child fall asleep faster?

While the need for sleep is inherent in all humans, the ability to fall asleep and stay asleep is something that can be learned and practiced.

Need help getting your child to fall asleep?

We are proud to offer evidence-based tips about bedtime routines, sleep hygiene and other practices that can make bedtime easy and harmonious.
Want to improve your child's sleeping habits? Check out our best tips for good sleep hygiene.

We're proud to design great sleep aids for kids

Our sleep stories are written and produced using a method recommended by sleep experts for helping kids fall asleep faster.

Our best tips for good sleep hygiene

A regular schedule
A set wake-up and bedtime, as well as daily activities interspersed with periods of rest.
A relaxing bedtime routine
Set aside plenty of time for a calming bedtime routine. Try relaxing activities such as taking a bath, and listening to a sleep story.
No screens in the bedroom
Avoid screens in the bedroom, even during the daytime. The bedroom is for calming down, and the bed is for sleeping.
Avoiding stress and conflict at bedtime
Use low-affective strategies when dealing with your child, to minimise stress and conflict at bedtime.
Regular mealtimes
Provide healthy and tasty meals at regular times throughout the day. Avoid serving food immediately before bed.
Daily exercise
Play, sports, a walk, bicycling - all wonderful exercise activities that can be undertaken during the day.
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