Submitted by the Lopez Island Prevention Coalition
Ben Franklin once said, “Early to bed and early to rise makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise,” and it turns out old Ben was right. But is it really true we need eight hours of sleep every night? March is National Sleep Awareness Month, and as we have set our clocks forward for daylight savings time, asking why sleep is so important and how much sleep we really need are valid questions. How much sleep is enough? It shouldn’t surprise us that children — who acquire language, social, and motor skills — need more sleep than adults. While adults need 7–9 hours of sleep per night, 1-year-olds need roughly 11 to 14 hours, school-age children between nine and 11, and teenagers between eight and 10.
Here are few tips for getting enough ZZZs:
– Keep a regular bedtime. Try and go to bed at the same time every night.
– Exercise during the day; it promotes better sleep.
– Avoid caffeine; limit foods and drinks that contain caffeine, and avoid them completely close to bedtime.
– Avoid using your bed as a place to do homework, play games or other activities. You want your body to associate your bed with sleep only.
In conclusion, we hope we’ve shared some new ideas to help maximize your sleep time. Happy sleeping!