How much sleep does each family member really need? [guide]

Posted in Sleeping Kids.

Family sleeping in bed

Sleep. Glorious, glorious, sleep. We all know we need it (well, except nap-resisting toddlers). But how much do we need? And what about our kids?

The Centre for Disease Control has put together a handy little video to help parents ensure they are putting their little dreamers down at the right time, based on their ages and sleep needs. Whether you have a napping newborn, a tired toddler or school-aged sleepers in the house, rest assured you are giving them enough time to recharge their batteries.

Behold the guidelines to our family’s sleeping requirements that we should all take note of.


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Newborn Icon

Newborns (0-3 months)

14-17 hours:

Not consecutively, of course. And often in increments of anywhere from 45 minutes to seven hours.


Infant IconInfant (4-11 months)

12-15 hours:

Again, not consecutively, usually split into two-three naps plus a night sleep.


Toddler IconToddler (1-2 years)

11-14 hours:

One nap and one nighttime sleep.


Preschooler Icon

Preschool (3-5 years)

10-13 hours:

Some preschoolers still nap. Most will drop the daytime sleep before they start ‘big’ school.


School Aged Icon

School aged (6-13 years)

10-13 hours:



Teeanger Icon

Teenagers (14-17 years)

8-10 hours:

But normally they trap themselves in their bedrooms for double this amount of time.

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Of course, it’s not just the kiddies that need sleep. Parents need it too. In between getting up for the kids, struggling with stress and battling a partner who keeps stealing the sheets, it’s understandable that we struggle with sleep.

Here is a breakdown of sleep requirements for adults. Turns out, four hours of broken sleep a night is not enough…

Young Adult IconYoung adults (18-25 years)

7-9 hours:

And, as you may still be able to recall, at this stage you can also survive on nights without sleep and a diet of Red Bull and vodkas (and somehow still get up the next morning).


Adult Icon

Adults (29-64 years)

7-9 hours:

Your sleep needs may remain the same as above, but your ability to survive on vodka has probably weakened immensely. Switch to coffee.


Older Adult Icon

Older adults (65+)

7-8 hours:

Daytime sleeps during the day are just an added bonus.


Now that you know a number of hours your kids need to sleep, have a look at this trick to getting them to sleep in their beds all night (yes, really). And, for those sleep deprived parents out there, this article on baby sleep that may help to explain a few things.

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