Enough sleep improves health.
(Mirror Daily, United States) – We all know that sleep is necessary in order to have a healthy life. However, only recently have scientists established the benefits of enough rest and the consequences of sleeping only a few hours every day.
Recent research from the American Academy of Sleep Medicine has shown that infants from 4 to 12 months need 12 to 16 hours of rest every day, including naps, whereas children 1 to 2 years need 11 to 14 hours of rest every 24 hours, naps included.
Furthermore, children with ages between 3 to 5 years need 10 to 13 hours of sleep every 24 hours, while children from 6 to 12 years need 9 to 12 hours. Last but not least, teenagers with ages from 13 to 18 years need between 8 and 10 hours of rest every 24 hours.
However, scientists did not establish how much rest is necessary for babies younger than 4 months, because there is not enough research and there is a broad range of sleep patterns regarding newborns.
According to Dr. Lee Brooks, consensus paper author and attending pulmonologist at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, the benefits of enough rest include better overall quality of life, emotional regulation, memory, learning, attention span, and behavior.
Nevertheless, if children do not meet the adequate number of sleep hours for their age, the consequences include depression, diabetes, obesity, hypertension, more injuries and several other health problems.
Worse, teens who rest only a few hours every night have a higher risk of suicidal thoughts and self-harm. According to Wendy Sue Swanson, a pediatrician at the Seattle Children’s Hospital and The Everett Clinic, more than 85 percent of teenagers do not sleep enough. Unfortunately, tiredness and deprivation affect interactions, mood, attention, schoolwork, and lead to a high risk of unhealthy weight.
It is also worth mentioning that too much sleep can also affect our lifelong habits and the daily routine. On the other hand, the biggest problem of today is the exposure to video screens, because light stimulates the state of wakefulness.
Therefore, experts recommend parents to turn off all screens at least 30 minutes before their children go to sleep. All in all, we all need to rest in order to have a healthier lifestyle.