How many hours does your child sleep?
It turns out that not all parents know about this. As it turned out during the research in the US, very many parents - 80% - do not really know how many hours their child sleeps. And in fact, scientists have established that on average, students in the US sleep 8-9 hours, although doctors advise to increase this figure to 11-11.5 hours. This data was provided by the American Healthy Sleep Foundation.
As for Ukrainian students, they sleep even less - 7-8 hours, which is confirmed by the data of the Dnipropetrovsk Research Center. Such a small duration of sleep in children is fixed - because of what would you think? - because of the enthusiasm for computer "strategies" and interesting cable TV programs. And, of course, school overloading also contributes its sad contribution: some children prepare lessons until 23.00, while the Ministry of Health recommends that they finish their homework no later than 19.00 and spend no more than three hours on them.
According to research data, a modern schoolboy sleeps for 2-5 hours less than a couple of decades ago, their parents slept at the same age. From this, children suffer gradually developing diseases, the causes of which parents do not even suspect. The reasons for these are simple: lack of sleep.
The payment for him - mental and physical disorders, weakened immunity, frequent colds, chronic fatigue syndrome, eye diseases. And, finally, the scourge of the 21st century is a hormonal imbalance. American scientists have proven that during sleep, the growth hormone is produced more intensely than ever before in children. If the child does not sleep, the growth hormone slows down its secretion, and the child suffers from physical underdevelopment.
As for rural schoolchildren, 40% of them also had a lack of sleep. Children in anonymous questionnaires wrote that they sleep 6.5-7.5 hours. But the norm - remember - from 10 to 11.5 hours. Children do not sleep half the time! Schoolchildren in large cities do not sleep much less - night hours steal themselves in their own more than 30% of children. But this is also very much - almost a third of schoolchildren! The reason children call the same - TV and the Internet, computer games are very exciting, you know.
Dangerous consequences of lack of sleep of schoolchildren
Parents may think that a child who has not had enough sleep will simply be less attentive to the lessons or, in extreme cases, something will not have time. But this is far from the case.
New research conducted by the Pennsylvania Research Center indicates that lack of sleep of schoolchildren leads to obesity, increases the risk of diabetes and the development of hypertension (high blood pressure). As we can see, the consequences of the "innocent" non-observance of the regime are much more serious than it may seem.
The most common reason why children do not sleep - movies and computer games - leads to unexpected consequences. Children at night have nightmares, they wake up broken and tired. And ahead of them a full-fledged school day, lessons, which need not just sit, but work. Those who love to see the horrors before going to bed can suffer from nightly fears, as a result the child develops a neurosis, he is afraid of switched off light and loneliness. Do parents want this, allowing the child to sit behind the monitor "another hour or two"?
Studies conducted in the US by the McArthur Foundation showed that a lack of sleep for a schoolboy during the whole week for 3-4 hours inhibits the digestion of food. In particular, lack of sleep affects the absorption of carbohydrate food (buns, so beloved by schoolchildren). In addition, after a night's lack of sleep, the fragile organism of children, even physically healthy, reacts much more to stresses. The schoolboy starts much slower to cope with stressful situations, which in the school and among peers have more than enough.
And if the teenager does not sleep enough, the harm is even greater: the crisis of adolescence, coupled with the weakening of the body, further aggravates adolescent nervousness and instability of behavior. The balance of hormones, so unstable, is broken even more, the teenager's immune system weakens, and the child begins to suffer from colds and allergies in a flat place.
What is more dangerous: prolonged or short-term sleep deprivation?
It would seem a strange question: both, perhaps, are harmful. But scientists give him the exact answer. Studies that were conducted in the US proved that not sleeping one or two nights for a child is not as dangerous as not sleeping enough "all" for 3-4 hours a week, two, a month. A prolonged lack of sleep affects the health of the student much worse.
Accumulated deficiency of sleep is a medical term, which means lack of sleep for a long period - more than a month - a period. Physicians compare it for adverse effects with poor diet or physical inactivity. Or with smoking, which destroys the child's body much faster than an adult. Doctors recommend that students take more exercise, take fresh fruits and vegetables, vitamin complexes ... But all this turns out to be ineffective if the schoolboy sleeps little.
The correct mode of the student's sleep
According to the sanitary and hygienic standards, primary school children should sleep at least 10 hours, children from 11 to 16 years - not less than 8 hours, and older teens 16-18 years - from 7.5 to 8 hours. And not a minute less. With this mode, the brain and the central nervous system have the opportunity to relax, and the entire body - to recover. If it happened that the child slept badly or not at night, after the lessons of the schoolboy you can lay for an hour or two, the pediatricians say. Otherwise, a tired child can not cope even with a homework.
The computer and the TV must be allowed to schoolchildren under 15 years not longer than before 20.00. It is advisable to spend an hour before going to bed on a walk in the open air - it relaxes the nervous system and allows the child to fall asleep more quickly. Children 15-16 years old can watch TV or sit at the computer no longer than 21.00. And again an hour should be devoted to quiet pursuits: reading, walking, warm soul.
To go to bed to children under 15 years is necessary not later than at 22.00, and from 15 years - no later than at 22.30. Before going to bed you do not need to go for a run, jump, play noisy games and generally active. An excited nervous system will not calm down after such a stimulation, which means that the child will not get enough sleep.
There is a simple but unreliable rule: the later the student goes to bed, the more difficult it is for him to fall asleep and the more restless his sleep will be. If the child has gone to bed after 00.00, lack of sleep is guaranteed. Therefore, it is desirable to put it on time.
How to put the student to sleep?
To the child quietly, without scandals went to bed, psychologists advise to arrange a retirement to sleep with the application of rituals. Parents can go for a walk before going to bed with their child (just a gift of their own nervous system). They can read an interesting but quiet book with the child. To the child of elementary grades it is possible to tell a fairy tale (for a long time forgotten fairy tales, children so like them!).
It is necessary to include quiet music, check the room before going to bed, prepare a clean fresh-smelling bed for the child - such as he likes, with butterflies, rabbits or funny teddy bears. The feeling of "your little place" will help your child to calm down, feel safe. Let your child fall asleep with his favorite toy - this will give him the confidence that at night no monster will touch him - a beloved bear or a hare will definitely protect. And one more important feature: put the schoolboy to bed at the same time. This produces a persistent habit in the child, the body, like a clock, will tell him that it's time to go to bed.
In the child's bedroom there should not be a TV and ideally - there should not be a computer. He should not interfere with light and loud conversations. Lack of sleep is very dangerous, as we have already found out. Therefore, parents should only be a little more attentive and firmer, so that your child's sleep is calm and sufficient.