No matter what your age, sleep is crucial.
There is one difference, though. We need different amounts of sleep depending on our age.
How much sleep do you actually need?
For kids, sleep is essential. That’s because sleep helps with learning and memory, boosting immunity, and helping children grow. When children are asleep, their bodies produce growth hormones, and hence the reason why children often need more sleep at times of rapid growth.
Children of all ages need to get enough sleep to play, learn and concentrate during the day.
Adults, on the other hand, need less sleep than children and teenagers.
Indeed the National Sleep Foundation conducted an extensive two-year study and found that sleep requirements vary across the lifespan and from person to person. Their study categorized sleep requirements into nine age-specific groups.
Below is a table of their recommendation for the appropriate amount of sleep required for the various age groups.
|Newborns||zero to 3 months||14 to 17 hours|
|Infants||4 to 11 months||12 to 15 hours|
|Toddlers||1 to 2 years||11 to 14 hours|
|Preschoolers||3 to 5 years||10 to 13 hours|
|School-aged children||6 to 13 years||9 to 11 hours|
|Teenagers||14 to 17 years||8 to 10 hours|
|Young adults||18 to 25 years||7 to 9 hours|
|Adults||26 to 64 years||7 to 9 hours|
|Older adults||65 years and up||7 to 8 hours|
The above recommendations represent a guideline for healthy individuals and those not suffering from a sleep disorder.
Summary of the recommended amount of sleep
- Newborns (zero to 3 months) require 14 to 17 hours of sleep.
- Infants (4 to 11 months) require 12 to 15 hours of sleep.
- Toddlers (1 to 2 years) require 11 to 14 hours of sleep.
- Preschoolers (3 to 5 years) require 10 to 13 hours of sleep.
- School-aged children (6 to 13 years) require 9 to 11 hours of sleep.
- Teenagers (14 to 17 years) require 8 to 10 hours of sleep.
- Young adults (18 to 25 years) require 7 to 9 nine hours of sleep.
- Adults (26 to 64 years) require 7 to 9 nine hours of sleep.
- Older adults (65 years and up) require 7 to 8 nine hours of sleep.