Public Release:  Expert panel recommends new sleep durations

National Sleep Foundation completes rigorous study and updates recommended sleep times at each life stage

National Sleep Foundation

WASHINGTON, DC, (February 2, 2015)--The National Sleep Foundation (NSF), along with a multi-disciplinary expert panel, issued its new recommendations for appropriate sleep durations. The report recommends wider appropriate sleep ranges for most age groups. The results are published in Sleep Health: The Official Journal of the National Sleep Foundation.

The National Sleep Foundation convened experts from sleep, anatomy and physiology, as well as pediatrics, neurology, gerontology and gynecology to reach a consensus from the broadest range of scientific disciplines. The panel revised the recommended sleep ranges for all six children and teen age groups. A summary of the new recommendations includes:

  • Newborns (0-3 months): Sleep range narrowed to 14-17 hours each day (previously it was 12-18)

  • Infants (4-11 months): Sleep range widened two hours to 12-15 hours (previously it was 14-15)

  • Toddlers (1-2 years): Sleep range widened by one hour to 11-14 hours (previously it was 12-14)

  • Preschoolers (3-5): Sleep range widened by one hour to 10-13 hours (previously it was 11-13)

  • School age children (6-13): Sleep range widened by one hour to 9-11 hours (previously it was 10-11)

  • Teenagers (14-17): Sleep range widened by one hour to 8-10 hours (previously it was 8.5-9.5)

  • Younger adults (18-25): Sleep range is 7-9 hours (new age category)

  • Adults (26-64): Sleep range did not change and remains 7-9 hours

  • Older adults (65+): Sleep range is 7-8 hours (new age category)

"This is the first time that any professional organization has developed age-specific recommended sleep durations based on a rigorous, systematic review of the world scientific literature relating sleep duration to health, performance and safety," said Charles A. Czeisler, PhD, MD, chairman of the board of the National Sleep Foundation, chief of sleep and circadian disorders at Brigham and Women's Hospital, and Baldino Professor of Sleep Medicine at the Harvard Medical School. "The National Sleep Foundation is providing these scientifically grounded guidelines on the amount of sleep we need each night to improve the sleep health of the millions of individuals and parents who rely on us for this information."

A new range, "may be appropriate," has been added to acknowledge the individual variability in appropriate sleep durations. The recommendations now define times as either (a) recommended; (b) may be appropriate for some individuals; or (c) not recommended.

"The National Sleep Foundation Sleep Duration Recommendations will help individuals make sleep schedules that are within a healthy range. They also serve as a useful starting point for individuals to discuss their sleep with their health care providers," said David Cloud, CEO of the National Sleep Foundation.

National Sleep Foundation's Sleep Duration Recommendations:

Age

Recommended

May be appropriate

Not recommended

Newborns

0-3 months

 

14 to 17 hours

11 to 13 hours

18 to 19 hours

Less than 11 hours

More than 19 hours

Infants

4-11 months

 

12 to 15 hours

10 to 11 hours

16 to 18 hours

Less than 10 hours

More than 18 hours

Toddlers

1-2 years

 

11 to 14 hours

9 to 10 hours

15 to 16 hours

Less than 9 hours

More than 16 hours

Preschoolers

3-5 years

 

10 to 13 hours

8 to 9 hours

14 hours

Less than 8 hours

More than 14 hours

School-aged Children

6-13 years

 

9 to 11 hours

7 to 8 hours

12 hours

Less than 7 hours

More than 12 hours

Teenagers

14-17 years

 

8 to 10 hours

7 hours

11 hours

Less than 7 hours

More than 11 hours

Young Adults

18-25 years

 

7 to 9 hours

6 hours

10 to 11 hours

Less than 6 hours

More than 11 hours

Adults

26-64 years

 

7 to 9 hours

6 hours

10 hours

Less than 6 hours

More than 10 hours

Older Adults

≥ 65 years

 

7 to 8 hours

5 to 6 hours

9 hours

Less than 5 hours

More than 9 hours

The recommendations are the result of multiple rounds of consensus voting after a comprehensive review of published scientific studies on sleep and health. The expert panel included six sleep experts and experts from the following stakeholder organizations:

    - American Association of Anatomists

    - American Academy of Pediatrics

    - American College of Chest Physicians

    - American Geriatrics Society

    - American Neurological Association

    - American Physiological Society

    - American Psychiatric Association

    - American Thoracic Society

    - Gerontological Society of America

    - Human Anatomy and Physiology Society

    - Society for Research in Human Development

    - American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists

"The NSF has committed to regularly reviewing and providing scientifically rigorous recommendations," says Max Hirshkowitz, PhD, Chair of the National Sleep Foundation Scientific Advisory Council. "The public can be confident that these recommendations represent the best guidance for sleep duration and health."

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To view the full results and methodology of the report, please visit sleephealthjournal.org.

Expert interviews and resources are available to the media. Please contact Anna Duggan for more information or to schedule an interview nsfmedia@sleepfoundation.org.

About the National Sleep Foundation

The National Sleep Foundation is dedicated to improving health and well-being through sleep education and advocacy. It is well-known for its annual Sleep in America® poll. The Foundation is a charitable, educational and scientific not-for-profit organization located in Washington, DC. Its membership includes researchers and clinicians focused on sleep medicine, health professionals, patients, families affected by drowsy driving and more than 900 healthcare facilities. http://www.sleepfoundation.org

Contact: Anna Duggan
National Sleep Foundation
Phone: 720-726-5440
Email: nsfmedia@sleepfoundation.org

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