You all know how I like to read… well sometimes mum is really irritating when she interrupts me in the middle of a good story and says it’s time for bed. I beg for another half hour but she says that kids need to sleep for at least 10 or 11 hours a night to be happy and healthy. She reckons I get grumpy when I don’t have enough sleep.
Sometimes I cheat and read with a torch under my blankets. The other day Mum caught me out and I was in serious trouble – she took my book away for two whole days!
I was quite sure that Mum was fibbing about how much sleep in needed so decided to google and find out why exactly why so many hours are needed.
Firstly between the age of 7 and 12 years old, we really do need to sleep those 10 or 11 hours a night. This is not just to stop us from becoming cranky either. It’s the time when our muscles repair themselves during the night. And don’t just think arm and leg muscles – it also includes our heart muscle.
Sleep also controls the signals that tell us when we are hungry or when we are full up – which allows us to maintain a good weight.
While we are happily snoozing our brains stores up all the stuff we have learned during the day – so that we can recall it later when we need it.
If we don’t sleep properly at night, it is harder to pay attention at school during the day. We tend to make more mistakes if we are tired than if we are well rested.
If we don’t get enough sleep at night – we could always have a little nap during the day to make up the sleep time. Preferably not during school time though because we’d land up in trouble with the teacher.
Apparently – it should take us about 15 to 20 minutes to fall asleep from when our head hits the pillow.
Of course teenagers can get away with a little less sleep – like 8 to 9 hours a night. Half the time they don’t get anywhere near this amount of sleep and so they really do need to sleep in over the weekends.
Seems like the older you get the less sleep you need.
Sleep tight and sweet dreams.