I’m a nationally published sleep expert, journalist, and the mom of three young kids. I’ve been helping tired families sleep since 2007 (more about me here). Subscribe to The Well Rested Family for fresh news and tips on keeping your bunch happy and healthy. Thanks for stopping by!


Find Me Here!

Tag cloud
10 month old sleep 11 month old 2 year old can't fall asleep 2 year old nap 3 year old stops napping 4 month old 45 minute naps 8 month old adults adults sleep alarm clock babies baby baby bedtime baby doesn't nap baby fall back baby nursing to sleep baby rolling at night baby short naps baby sleep baby sleep positioners baby sleep routine bad bedtimes bedroom too loud bedsharing bedtime bedtime baby bedtime books bedtime child bedtime for teens bedtime problem bedtime routine bedtime snacks bedtimes bedwetting best bedtime stories for kids big boy bed blackout curtains boost breastfed baby sleep through the night bsby cosleeping bumpers caffeine child child bedtime child can't sleep child sleeping in a tent childcare childhood fears and sleep children cosleeping cover story creativity crib cry it out cultural intelligence daycare daylight savings time Daylight Savings Time kid bedtime daylight savings time sleep DHA does exercise help kids sleep dropping a nap DST early waker early waking ebook education energy equality equally shared parenting exercise and kids exercise and sleep fall back falling back families family five month old naps five month old short naps five month old sleep five year old bedtime food getting baby to bed getting dad to help with bedtime Getting kids to bed getting kids to bed during the summer getting kids to bed when it's light out getting rid of the pacifier giveaway green Harvey Karp Hawaii health heart health tips help helping kids adjust to daylight savings time helping kids get to sleep after vacation Helping kids sleep in the summer helping kids sleep through the night helping twins sleep holiday how long should babies nap how long should bedtime take how much sleep do adults need how to get rid of nightmares how to help a preschooler nap how to stop nightmares humor immune system infant sleep insomnia kids kids always get sick kids and daylight savings time kids sharing bedrooms kids sleep questions Kindle king 5 large family late bedtime learning leg cramps light math Moms moving child to his own bedroom nap nap routine napping in arms naps new sibling newborn news night terror night waking nightlights nightmare nightmares nighttime dryness nurse to sleep association nutrition one year old overtied kids overtired overtired child overtiredness pacifier pajamas nightmares parenting parentmap pediatric restless legs syndrome potty training pregnancy and newborn preschool Preschooler problem problem solving product productivity pull ups putting kids to bed questions raising a boy robotic safety safey separation anxiety setting a bedtime for kids shared bedroom shared bedrooms Shopping short naps short sleeper six month old sleep skipped naps sleep sleep and learning sleep coach sleep coaching sleep consulting sleep expert sleep for moms sleep gadgets sleep help sleep hygiene sleep pregnancy sleep questions sleep regression sleep through the night sleeping during the summer sleeping well during pregnancy sleeping while camping soundproof spring forward standing and screaming in crib stress sugar summer summer bedtime swaddle teen teen bedtime Teenage brains television time change time zone adjustment toddler toddler 4 am toddler bed toddler leg cramps toddler naps toddler sleep toddlers toilet transition transition to one nap travel with kids tryptophan twins undertired up all night violence and kids violent video games and children waking warm bedroom hurts sleep weaning the swaddle winter women heart health won't fall asleep work worries
« Ask Malia: Handling the Anti-Bedtime Brigade | Main | Ask Malia: The Portable, Napless Secondborn »

Say Good-night to Getting Sick

Get more sleep, and you may not need this (cute) hot water bottle.Summer’s right around the corner—I spent my weekend getting my kids’ summer gear washed up and ready for play (hooray!). But all the sunshine and springtime fun makes it easy to forget that there are still plenty of nasty cold and flu bugs circulating this time of year. In fact, until the end of May, we’re still officially in flu season. (Yep, that’s right, it runs October through May.)

Want to keep kids healthy enough to enjoy spring? Time-honored tactics like hand washing and vitamin-popping can help, but here’s a little-known secret to a superstar immune system that’s simple, enjoyable, and free: sleep. And all the hand sanitizer in the world won’t make up for lost hours in the sack. That’s because adequate sleep supports a healthy immune system—and sleep deprivation handicaps your immune response, leaving you (or your kids) more susceptible to the virus du jour.

An increasing body of research (including this study) is highlighting sleep’s vital role in immune function. Just how does sleep pump up the immune system? During sleep, the body releases infection-fighting proteins called cytokines that play a role in fighting infection and inflammation. During periods of sleep deprivation, infection fighting cells are reduced.

Is your kiddo getting enough sleep to ward off bugs? Take a peek at these general guidelines. If your child is falling short, move bedtime earlier by 20-30 minutes per night. This small change adds up to a couple extra hours of sleep per week, which may put your family on the path to a healthier summer.

One to Four Weeks Old: 15-16 hours per day

One to Twelve Months Old: 14-15 hours per day

One to Three Years Old: 12-14 hours per day

Three to Six Years Old: 10-12 hours per day

Six to Ten Years Old: 9-11 hours per day

Ten to Eighteen Years Old: 8-10 hours per day

Reader Comments

There are no comments for this journal entry. To create a new comment, use the form below.

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.

My response is on my own website »
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong>