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Tweaking Back to School Bedtime

Going back to school means new teachers, new classrooms and a new sleep schedule.

After spending the whole summer staying up late and waking up later on the weekends, one of the biggest struggles for kids is falling back into a scheduled sleep routine.

The Centers for Disease Control says the right amount of sleep contributes to a students’ overall health and academic achievements. Health experts tell parents that pre-teens should get at least 10 hours of sleep and 13 to 19 year-olds requires about nine hours.

The American Academy of Sleep Medicine also recommend the following:

  • Adjust wake-up time – Start waking your kids up a little bit earlier each day before school starts. A gradual transition will help adjust better to the new schedule. suggests starting the transition two weeks prior to the first day of school.
  • Improve bedtime practices – Limit cell phone use, television and video games before bed.
  • Relax before bed – A warm bath with a few drops of lavender oil will help kids relax and reduce stress.
  • Early dinner – According to, children should have dinner at least three hours before bedtime. Eating too late can cause your child to stay awake past their bedtime.

Having a consistent sleep routine, together with a healthy diet and exercise will be essential for your children to be successful in school and for their overall health.

Reporting by Val Simpson