Sleep is vital for children’s brain development and also for their health, so it is important for all of them to get enough. In the modern age of mobile phones many parents are concerned that their children stay awake way to long and that this may affect their grades at school as well as their general wellbeing.
For our latest survey we decided to find out just how much sleep children are getting. We asked 2,401 schoolchildren how many hours sleep they got in a typical night. Bearing in mind that the amount of sleep required varies with different age groups, the average amount children need is about 10 hours per night. As you can see from the graph above, less than a quarter of our respondents are getting enough sleep. A whopping 77% are not getting enough.
As I said, the amount of sleep required varies between age groups. So, let’s have a look in more detail at each of these in turn…
The NHS recommends that children in this age group get between 10.5 to 11 hours sleep per night. As you can see, a mere 17% of our respondents are getting that much. What is worse, almost a third (31%) get less than 6 hours per night on a regular basis. This is a frightening statistic. Younger children have brains which need to develop as they grow and learn. Sleep is essential for this. So for so many children to be so sleep deprived is shocking.
According to the NHS, children in this age range need between 9.5 and 10.25 hours sleep per night. But how many are getting that? Well, in our survey fewer than half (34%) manage this. Just under a quarter (23%) are almost there, getting between 8 and 9 hours. But a massive 43% get less than 8 hours per night. More bad news for brain development.
The recommended amount of sleep for young adolescents is 9.25-9.5 hours per night. As you can see, only 17% of our respondents are getting more than 9 hours per night. Slightly less than a quarter (24%) get 8-9 hours and the rest (59%) get fewer than 8. Yet another shocking statistic.
Finally we come to the oldest group of children, post-pubescent 15-17-year-olds. Notoriously lazy, you might expect this age group to be getting more than enough sleep. The NHS recommends 9 hours per night for these. But only 7% are getting 9 hours or more, with 13% getting 8-9 hours. That means a huge proportion (80%) are getting nowhere near enough sleep. With GCSE and A-Level studies taking place during this period, sleep as just as important – perhaps even more so – for these.
The depressing results of our poll show that, taking the average from each age group, 66% of children are sleep deprived. This should be a major cause of concern for all parents. So, what can you do about it? Well, our Knowledge Bank article on this very subject is full of useful hints and advice. Why not take a look?EXPLORE THE WORLD OF CHILDREN’S SURVEYS
Here are the results from the 2,401 children who answered our question "How much sleep do you get in an average night?". The survey was conducted in the week ending 21st February 2021.
|How much sleep do you get in an average night?||Percentage of Respondents|
|More Than 10 Hours||9%|
|Less Than 6 Hours||17%|