Back to School: Getting students back on a regular sleep routine

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WHEELING, W.Va. (WTRF) — As students approach the end of summer, parents must begin preparing a game plan to get their child back into the ‘school year’ routine.

Heath experts say the best way to achieve this is by gradually getting your child into the swing of things.

“Children ages 6-12 need 9 to 12 hours of sleep, said Dr. Clark Milton, Medical Director of Wheeling Hospital. “Those [ages] 13-18 need 8 to 10. Establishing a gradual change in the sleep-wake cycle is the best way to do that, particularly in the summer.”

Dr. Milton also suggest creating a relaxing, nightly routine that your child can repeat.

“Try to set a bedtime,” said Dr. Milton. “Create calming activities before bedtimes such as reading or a warm shower. Make sure the bedroom is cool, dimly lit, quiet, and comfortable.”

However, all of this won’t matter if your child still has access to their electronics during bedtime.

“Keep the TVs, the computers, the laptops, and cell phones out of the room,” said Dr. Milton. “We all know how the ‘ding’ of the text message disrupts our sleep.”

Most importantly, by getting your child into a normal sleep routine now, it sets them up for success in the future.

“25 fewer minutes of sleep per night will have a negative effect on grades because of concentration and fatigue,” said Dr. Milton. “So, the number of hours of sleep is important and requires some scheduling.”

Doctors recommend starting a sleep schedule as soon as possible.

That way you can avoid some unpleasant battles in the morning and at night.

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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