How Many Hours Of Sleep You Need Each Night According To Your Age

We spend around one-third of our lives sleeping, which is based on the idea that the average person gets roughly 8 hours of sleep each night. While we have been taught that 8 hours is the golden amount of sleep to get, a panel of experts from numerous scientific disciplines convened, reviewed numerous studies, and concluded that people need different amounts of sleep based on their age.

The National Sleep Foundation led the panel and gathered experts from the fields of sleep, anatomy, physiology, neurology, pediatrics, gerontology and gynecology to reach an agreement on the optimal hours of sleep we should be getting each night.

“This is the first time that any professional organization has developed age-specific recommended sleep durations based on a rigorous, systematic review of the world scientific literature relating sleep duration to health, performance and safety,” said Dr. Charles A. Czeisler, the chairman of the board of the National Sleep Foundation.



The recommendations are the result of multiple rounds of consensus voting by experts after conducting comprehensive reviews of published scientific studies related to sleep and health. The expert panel included six sleep experts and experts from the following organizations:

  • American Association of Anatomists
  • American Academy of Pediatrics
  • American College of Chest Physicians
  • American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists
  • American Geriatrics Society
  • American Neurological Association
  • American Physiological Society
  • American Psychiatric Association
  • American Thoracic Society
  • Gerontological Society of America
  • Human Anatomy and Physiology Society
  • Society for Research in Human Development

The National Institutes of Health (NIH.gov) reported that the average adult sleeps less than seven hours per night, yet nowhere in the recommended sleeping hours did professionals advise to get less than seven hours of sleep. Sleep deprivation has been shown to impair attention, alertness, concentration, reasoning, problem solving and it can seriously decrease one’s ability to operate a motor vehicle. Sleep deprivation also increases the risk of numerous heart related and blood pressure problems.

Getting enough sleep on the other hand gives us a sharper brain to function optimally, a mood boost as the brain has had enough time to process emotions during sleep, a healthier heart, and an increase in athletic ability.

Below are the recommendations on how much sleep you need each night according to the expert panel, based on your age:

1. Newborns: 0 to 3 months old

Newborns aged 0 to 3 months need 14 to 17 hours of sleep each night. It is not recommended to get less than 11 hours of sleep each night.

2. Infants: 4 to 11 months old

Infants aged 4 to 11 months need 12 to 15 hours of sleep each night. It is not recommended to get less than 10 hours of sleep each night.



3. Toddlers: 1 to 2 years old

Toddlers aged 1 to 2 years old need 11 to 14 hours of sleep each night. It is not recommended to get less than 9 hours of sleep each night.

4. Preschoolers: 3 to 5 years old

Preschoolers aged 3 to 5 years old need 10 to 13 hours of sleep each night. It is not recommended to get less than 8 hours of sleep each night.

5. School-Aged Children: 6 to 13 years old

School-Aged Children 6 to 13 years old need 9 to 11 hours of sleep each night. It is not recommended to get less than 7 hours of sleep each night.

6. Teenagers: 14 to 17 years old

Teenagers aged 14 to 17 years old need 8 to 10 hours of sleep each night. It is not recommended to get less than 7 hours of sleep each night.

7. Young Adults: 18 to 25 years old

Young adults aged 18 to 25 years old need 7 to 9 hours of sleep each night. It is not recommended to get less than 6 hours of sleep each night.

8. Adults: 26 to 64 years old 

Adults aged 26 to 64 years old need 7 to 9 hours of sleep each night. It is not recommended to get less than 6 hours of sleep each night.

9. Older adults:  Over 65 years old

Older adults aged 65+ need 7 to 9 hours of sleep each night. It is not recommended to get less than 6 hours of sleep each night.

Photo credit: National Sleep Foundation

How many hours of sleep do you get each night?

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See Also: How To Fall Sound Asleep Within 1 Minute

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