Get Enough Sleep
It’s important to get enough sleep. Sleep helps keep your mind and body healthy.
How much sleep do I need?
Most adults need 7 or more hours of good-quality sleep on a regular schedule each night.
Getting enough sleep isn’t only about total hours of sleep. It’s also important to get good-quality sleep on a regular schedule so you feel rested when you wake up.
If you often have trouble sleeping — or if you often still feel tired after sleeping — talk with your doctor.
How much sleep do children need?
Kids need even more sleep than adults:
- Teens need 8 to 10 hours of sleep each night
- School-aged children need 9 to 12 hours of sleep each night
- Preschoolers need to sleep between 10 and 13 hours a day (including naps)
- Toddlers need to sleep between 11 and 14 hours a day (including naps)
- Babies need to sleep between 12 and 16 hours a day (including naps)
- Newborns need to sleep between 14 and 17 hours a day
Why is getting enough sleep important?
Getting enough sleep has many benefits. It can help you:
- Get sick less often
- Stay at a healthy weight
- Lower your risk for serious health problems, like diabetes and heart disease
- Reduce stress and improve your mood
- Think more clearly and do better in school and at work
- Get along better with people
- Make good decisions and avoid injuries — for example, drowsy drivers cause thousands of car accidents every year
Does it matter when I sleep?
Yes. Your body sets your “biological clock” according to the pattern of daylight where you live. This helps you naturally get sleepy at night and stay alert during the day.
If you have to work at night and sleep during the day, you may have trouble getting enough sleep. It can also be hard to sleep when you travel to a different time zone.
Get sleep tips to help you:
Why can’t I fall asleep?
Many things can make it harder for you to sleep, including:
- Stress or anxiety
- Certain health conditions, like heartburn or asthma
- Some medicines
- Caffeine (usually from coffee, tea, and soda)
- Alcohol and other drugs
- Untreated sleep disorders, like sleep apnea or insomnia
If you’re having trouble sleeping, try making changes to your routine to get the sleep you need. You may want to:
- Change what you do during the day — for example, get your physical activity in the morning instead of at night
- Create a comfortable sleep environment — for example, make sure your bedroom is dark and quiet
- Set a bedtime routine — for example, go to bed at the same time every night
How can I tell if I have a sleep disorder?
Sleep disorders can cause many different problems. Keep in mind that it’s normal to have trouble sleeping every now and then. People with sleep disorders generally experience these problems on a regular basis.
Common signs of sleep disorders include:
- Trouble falling or staying asleep
- Still feeling tired after a good night’s sleep
- Sleepiness during the day that makes it difficult to do everyday activities, like driving or concentrating at work
- Frequent loud snoring
- Pauses in breathing or gasping while sleeping
- Tingling or crawling feelings in your legs or arms at night that feel better when you move or massage the area
- Feeling like it’s hard to move when you first wake up
If you have any of these signs, talk to a doctor or nurse. You may need testing or treatment for a sleep disorder.
To learn more about sleep disorders: