What time should a 12 year old go to bed

Katie - posted on 12/09/2014 ( 1 mom has responded )




My 12 year old daughter's bedtime is 9:00pm. She always gives me a hard time when I tell her to go to bed because her friends don't go to bed until 11:00pm. I just wanted to know is she right, does she go to bed too early.


Jodi - posted on 12/10/2014




11pm is WAY too late, particularly on a school night. 12 year olds are still growing and their brains are still developing. They should be getting at least 10-11 hours a night.

As she heads into adolescents, she may need a little less sleep and the internal clock tends to change. But even then, they should be getting a MINIMUM of 8 1/2 hours a night.

As a teacher of teens, I can tell you, many of them do NOT get enough sleep, and their performance at school as a result, suffers. I think stats indicate that only about 15% of teens actually get the minimum sleep requirement.

As a rule of thumb in my house, when my son reached high school age (around 11-12), I had him set his own alarm and get himself up in the mornings. If he was sleeping through his alarm, then clearly he was going to bed too late. On school nights, his bed time was 9pm for a long time. It really only extended to 10pm when he was 15, and recently, I've shut him down at 11pm (he is 17 now). He needs to be up at 7am for school. I think there have only been a handful of times I've had to wake him on that schedule.

I do also still have reasonable limits on bedtimes weekends and holidays, simply because it is too hard to get back into a routine, and catch up sleep is far less effective.

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