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What Time Should 12-Year-Olds Go to Bed

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Written By Anđela Rajković

Certified Sleep Consultant

Featured image for What Time Should 12-Year-Olds Go to Bed.

29 April 2024 5 min read

Are you a parent wondering if your 12-year-old is staying up too late binge-watching their favourite show? Let's talk about the best bedtime for your growing preteen. That is, let us tackle the issue of what time should 12-year-olds go to bed.

Hey parents, are you tired of arguing with your 12-year-old about their bedtime? We feel you. It can be tough to find the right balance between enough sleep and letting them stay up a little later to enjoy some screen time or hang out with friends.

In this article, we'll give you some tips on how to determine the perfect bedtime for your preteen, so everyone can get a good night's rest.

Best time for a twelve-year-old to hit the bed

An image of a 12-year-old sleeping in bed

Ah, the great bedtime debate!

As a parent of a twelve-year-old, you may find yourself wondering what is the best time for your preteen to hit the hay. But fear not – we've got you covered with some fun and creative tips to help you determine the perfect bedtime for your child.

First, consider your child's individual sleep needs. Pay attention to your child's behaviour and energy levels to determine what works best for them.

Next, think about your family's schedule. Does your child have to wake up early for school or extracurricular activities? If so, a bedtime that allows for enough sleep is crucial.

On the other hand, if your family's schedule allows for a more flexible wake-up time, you may have a bit more wiggle room when it comes to bedtime.

Take all of this into consideration and try to figure out the perfect time to start reading that bedtime story! If you ask us – 9 PM would be a perfect time. But, just as we said earlier, every child is different!

How many hours of sleep should twelve-year-olds get?

When it comes to a child's sleep, there's no one-size-fits-all answer – especially when it comes to twelve-year-olds! But one thing is clear: getting enough sleep is crucial for your child's health and well-being.

So, how many hours of sleep should your twelve-year-old be getting? The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends 9-12 hours of sleep for children ages 6-12. However, some experts suggest that twelve-year-olds may need closer to 10-11 hours of sleep per night to feel well-rested and refreshed.

But it's not just about the total number of hours of sleep – the quality of that sleep is important too! Deep sleep, also known as slow-wave sleep, is crucial for physical and mental restoration. During deep sleep, the body repairs and regenerates tissue strengthens the immune system and consolidates memories and learning.

And what about babies, toddlers, school-aged children and teenagers?

Babies need a lot of sleep to grow and develop, typically ranging from 14 to 17 hours a day.

Toddlers require a similar amount of sleep, but usually ranging from 11 to 14 hours a day.

School-aged children should aim for 9 to 11 hours of sleep each night, which can help them stay focused and energised during the day.

Teenagers may feel like they don't need as much sleep, but they should still aim for 8 to 10 hours of sleep each night to support their physical and mental health.

Why do bedtimes matter?

An image of a woman wearing a sleep mask.

Do you remember when you were a kid and your parents would read you a story, tuck you in, and kiss you goodnight? That's a bedtime routine! And guess what? It's not just about being cosy and cute – having a bedtime routine is actually super important for your health!

Let's talk about circadian rhythm. That's just a fancy way of saying your body's natural sleep-wake cycleWhen you have a consistent bedtime routine, you're helping to regulate your circadian rhythm. That means your body knows when it's time to wind down and get ready for sleep, making it easier for you to fall asleep and stay asleep.

And why is a good night's sleep so important? Well, it helps your brain and body recharge! When you're asleep, your brain is busy forming new neural pathways and consolidating memories. Plus, your body is repairing and regenerating tissue, strengthening your immune system, and releasing hormones that help you grow and develop.

By establishing a healthy bedtime routine, you're setting yourself up for a lifetime of healthy sleep habits. So go ahead, get cosy, and have sweet dreams!

Establishing a bedtime routine

An image of three 12-year-olds taking pictures on a bed

First off, let's make it fun! Ask your child what they would like to do before bed. Maybe they want to have a dance party or play a board game. Whatever it is, incorporate it into your routine. Next, establish a consistent bedtime that works for your child's age and schedule. This will help regulate their body's natural sleep-wake cycle and make falling asleep a breeze.

Now it's time to get cosy! Create a relaxing sleep environment with soft blankets, comfortable pillows, and some soothing music. Maybe even dim the lights to make it extra cosy.

You can also incorporate some relaxing activities like reading a bedtime story, doing some gentle stretches, or practising some mindfulness exercises.

And finally, remember to be consistent! Try to stick to your bedtime routine every night, even on weekends or during holidays. This will help your child get used to a regular sleep schedule and make it easier for them to fall asleep and stay asleep.

Bedtime tips

Here are some fun and creative bedtime routine tips to help your little ones get more sleep and better-quality sleep:

To wrap things up

In conclusion, determining the best bedtime for 12-year-olds is crucial for their overall health and well-being. As children's sleep patterns change with age, it's important to adjust their bedtime accordingly. Implementing a consistent bedtime routine can also help establish healthy sleep habits that can last a lifetime. By considering factors such as school schedules, extracurricular activities, and individual sleep needs, parents can determine the ideal bedtime for their 12-year-old.

Shortly, prioritising children's sleep and promoting positive bedtime routines can lead to better physical and mental health outcomes.

But let's hear from you! If you're a parent, what do you think, what time should 12-year-olds go to bed? And how can you help them achieve a better sleeping routine? Let us know in the comments!

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About the author

Anđela Rajković
As a CPD certified Sleep Consultant and well-practiced sleep enthusiast, I find a lot of joy in bringing my expertise to our readers – preferably those who love to sleep. With a background in the English language and literature and a love of research, I'm always seeking new ways to share the latest sleep science and bed-related findings. And, when I'm not connecting with my readers, you can find me exploring the great outdoors, or, well, curling up in bed.
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