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What's The Appropriate Bedtime For Kids In The Digital Age?

kid sleeping on laptop

The idea of a child's optimal bedtime is one of the most controversial parenting topics. Some people think children should sleep for 10-12 hours, while others believe up to 12 hours is too long. The truth is, the best sleep schedule for kids is whatever works for you and your child. Parents and their kids have been struggling with bedtimes for decades. However, the past 20 years have introduced digital technology that has massively disrupted sleep patterns for people of all ages. Nevertheless, the correct amount of sleep hasn't changed; it's the fact that they are finding it harder to sleep to a routine that has.

The Importance Of Restful Sleep

It is never too early to teach your child the importance of sleep. Sleep is very critical for a developing child. It helps build muscles, hormones, and brain cells and strengthens brain connections. There is a strong link between sleep and the immune system. Chronically sleep-deprived children show a wide range of health issues, including obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular problems.

How Phones And Tablets Affect Children's Sleep?

A 2017 study by the American Academy of Pediatrics released a report stating that mobile devices in children's bedrooms may lead to increased sleeping problems since they emit blue light, which affects the body's natural sleep cycle. The same study found this may lead to delayed development in children. Another study reported that children who slept in a room with a TV were less likely to get enough sleep than children who slept in a room without a TV.

How Much Sleep Does A Child Need?

One of the biggest concerns for parents is whether their kids are getting enough sleep. This is regularly measured as a percentage of total sleep time (usually hours), but there are other methods, such as considering how alert a child looks after waking up. As a parent, you may worry that your child is not getting enough sleep, but do you know how much sleep they need? The optimal sleep time as advised by Puffy depends on a person's age, and the amount of sleep a child needs varies between age groups and types of sleep. A newborn baby needs about 12 hours of sleep per 24 hours, while a toddler needs about 11 to 12 hours. A child needs around 10 to 11 hours, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics. The amount of sleep a child should get each night also depends on age. A 13-year-old child should get 10 to 11 hours of sleep, while a 3-year-old needs between 9 and 10 hours.

How Much Should A Child Nap?

Naptime is a significant time for children. When infants and young toddlers are tired, they sleep a lot. But the way you keep your children napping may differ from those of other parents. For example, some parents think that naps should be few and far between, while others believe in keeping their kids napping for an hour or two every day. Most kids require about an hour of daytime naps each day, but how much they should rest depends on their age, how long they go to sleep at night, and other factors. A new study suggests that most children have a "sweet spot" for napping, such as falling between two and three hours daily, but the numbers don't lie.

Some Tips To Help Your Child Sleep Better

If you've ever had trouble getting your child to sleep at night, you know the problem can be a significant source of stress for you and your family. Getting your child to sleep is a huge accomplishment, one that every parent should strive to achieve and one that can be difficult sometimes. However, there are some tried and tested methods that can ease this process.

Setting a Bedtime Routine

If you have a child who is struggling to fall asleep, you know it's not easy. He or she may have a hard time handling a nap or bedtime routine. You may have tried to use the same pattern every night, but it didn't seem to work. Put simply: your child's bedtime routine doesn't work. Nevertheless, a bedtime routine is vital for kids and teens. It helps them fall asleep and helps them sleep through the night. 

Bedtime Routine Dos and Don'ts

When it comes to setting a routine, you should follow a few rules to ensure that it is adhered to each night before bed.

  • Do set up the rules and be consistent.

  • Do involve hygiene as part of the routine.

  • Do make it quick and easy to follow.

  • Do include reading and education where possible (but not too much overstimulation).

  • Do remind them to go to the toilet before sleeping.

  • Do start early so that the routine won't push on into the night if there are any problems.

  • Do dim the lights and make it a comfortable and safe place.


Now that you understand what you can do, you should avoid some of the main things where possible.


  • Don't allow your child to become overstimulated. This includes anything to do with phones and TVs.

  • Don't get in a position whereby your child associates an action with sleeping, like hand-holding until they fall asleep. This is behavioral conditioning, and it can be challenging to wean them away from it.

  • Don't give in because it is too difficult to maintain the rules. You must be consistent because it is your child's future that is at risk.

Use Age-Old Techniques

Some of the traditional methods in getting children to sleep are still relevant and worth a go, such as:

  • Warm milk.

  • A hot bath before they get into bed.

  • Making the bedroom the correct temperature.

  • Keeping them actors during the day.

  • Eating dinner early.

The proper bedtime is one subject that many parents struggle with. It's essential to get your child a good night's sleep, of course, but it's also important to consider the importance of a good night's sleep for the whole family. A nap may be a better choice, or a little extra cuddling time, depending on the situation. Nevertheless, creating a routine and sticking to it is often considered the best way to help your child drift off soundly.