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School-aged children need between 9 and 11 hours of sleep per night depending on age. Not getting enough sleep is common in children and young people. Sleep deprivation can be caused by any number of issues including; irregular routines, worries, screen use and late bedtimes.
Teenagers have the added complication of a biological shift to go to sleep and wake later – which is at odds with the school day.

Not getting enough sleep affects children and young people’s ability to think, handle stress, maintain healthy immune systems and regulate their emotions.

In school you might notice a child is sleep deprived because;
• They are irritable, easily upset, defiant, lethargic or hyperactive
• Have poor focus and motivation – don’t meet their potential
• Fall asleep at inappropriate times
• Eat and drink too much

Children and young people who are not getting enough sleep often have high levels of lateness and/or low school attendance. Poor sleep can be a serious obstacle to children and young people’s education and attainment

  • Along with a healthy diet and regular activity good sleep hygiene can make a big difference to the outcomes for children and young people.
    Whilst sleep ‘happens’ at home the fallout from sleep deprivation is seen in school.
    Helping children and their families understand the value of sleep is important. Offering some support to establish healthy habits can mean children come to school better able to learn and engage positively in school life.

    Good Sleep Hygiene

    By Day
    • Be active
    • Eat well and at regular intervals

    Get the room right
    • Not too hot or cold
    • Dark (low level night lights are ok)
    • Comfy bed

    Get the build up right
    • Same bedtime and get up time each day
    • ‘Wind down’ activities – bath time, reading quiet play
    • Avoid stimulating activities like 'exciting’ computer games
    • Stop screen use at least an hour before bed (the blue light from screen time gets in the way of melatonin –the ‘sleep hormone’)

    If children and young people struggle to get to sleep then using relaxation techniques can help. The Mental Health Foundation have some available *here*

    If insomnia or early waking is an ongoing problem it can be indicative of low mood and may need onward referral for assessment call JustOneNumber on 0300 300 0123 for advice.

  • ChatHealth
    Health Passport App
    Discussion with a School Nurse Call Just One Norfolk 0300 300 0123
    School Nurse Health Assessment
    Assistant Practitioner Sleep Pathway

  • You can signpost the child/young person and families to various websites to promote healthy sleep routines.

    NHS Healthy Sleep Tips for Younger Children *here*

    NHS Sleep Tips for Teens *here*

    National Sleep Foundation – sleep and screen time *here*

    ‘Sleep East’ local support for families struggling with sleep issues *here*

    Health for Teens information on Sleep *here*

    NHS Moodzone has an audio podcast on sleep *here* Can't use (Youtube)

    Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health have a fact sheet for parents on screen time *here*

    The PSHE association has lesson plans on healthy sleep *here*

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