Beauty Sleep

Mommy says that I’m fussy if I don’t get my sleep. I think mommy gets fussy if she doesn’t get her sleep too. If we’re both sleepy, nothing seems to work out right and the only way to get the day back on track, is if we both have a nap. Then we wake up refreshed and ready for more adventures.

Everybody knows that sleep is important to our health, but so few of us make it a priority. I confess that I often get distracted with some activity and don’t realize I’m getting sleepy. Then I suddenly get overwhelmed by how tired I am and maybe I do fuss a little. At first my eyes feel a little funny, and then all of a sudden, I can’t sit up straight. You would be fussy too if sleep snuck up on you like that.

Baby having a nap with a pacifier

Time for a little snooze.

I would prefer to be having fun rather than sleep, but my body doesn’t want to cooperate. Sometimes I feel like I’m sleeping my life away. Is it possible that my body is just lazy? How much sleep do I really need anyway? Time to do some research.

Mommy helped me look into this matter and get some answers to my questions. We decided on two sources which seemed very credible, the National Sleep Foundation, and the American Academy of Sleep Medicine. Each of these two organizations have employed panels of experts to figure out how much we should be sleeping.

Although their conclusions vary slightly, they are surprising similar. Here are their recommendations for optimal sleep duration. The data is organized by age group and includes all naps.

National Sleep Foundation sleep duration recommendations

The National Sleep Foundation has organized their data into nine age groups. Most people in each group should be somewhere within the recommended range, but some may be somewhat outside of that window. They call this the “may be appropriate” zone.

0-3 months 14-17 hours (11-19)

4-11 months 12-15 hours (10-18)

1-2 years 11-14 hours (9-16)

3-5 years 10-13 hours (8-14)

6-13 years 9-11 hours (7-12)

14-17 years 8-10 hours (7-11)

18-25 years 7-9 hours (6-11)

26-64 years 7-9 hours (6-10)

65+ years 7-8 hours (5-9)

The American Academy of Sleep Medicine has their data organized into six age groups with only the recommended range being displayed on their chart. Compared with the above information, the similarities can’t be ignored.

American Academy of Sleep Medicine recommended sleep duration

4-12 months 12-16 hours

1-2 years 11-14 hours

3-5 years 10-13 hours

6-12 years 9-12 hours

13-18 years 8-10 hours

18+ years 7+ hours

There is no guideline for the 0-3 month age group. The 18-25, 26-24, and 65+ year age groups are bundled into the 18+ category.

Based on this information, I should be sleeping somewhere around 12-16 hours, but possibly as little as 10 hours or as much as 18 hours. Is that a lot? I’m not sure. I’m still working on my understanding of time. How many Itsy Bitsy Spiders is that?


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