Doctors recommend parents, children prepare for back to school sleep schedule

Friday, August 16, 2013 - 4:15am

The beginning of a new school year is just around the corner, but something some parents don't plan for is the impending pre-dawn wake up call.

"I've been working with the Chapin speech and debate team already so my sleep schedule is already adjusted for school," said Chapin High School Senior Matthew Magee.

"I go to bed at a certain time and it's just how it is for me," said Chapin High School Senior Alexandria Armstrong.

Some Chapin High School students are ready for the back-to-school sleep schedule and it seems some parents are too.

"I have wonderful children that go to bed when I ask them to go to bed so I don't think it's an issue. I think it just depends on individual households," said parent Tracy Bayer.

But, it could be harder for other kids and parents.

"All of their biologic rhythms in their brain and body are getting accustomed to that late sleeping and getting up time, and we need to shift them to the school schedule," said Dr. Gary Montgomery with the Atlanta Sleep Center.

Parents can help by getting their kids up an hour earlier every other day until they meet the time for school.

"Parents will notice that their child is naturally sleepy earlier at night, as we march that wake up time," said Montgomery.

You can also set up a nighttime routine. Quiet activities, like reading a book and of course turning off electronics are recommended.

Elementary school age children need about ten to twelve hours of sleep each night, teenagers need nine. However, each kid is different.


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