Getting back into school sleep mode

August 28, 2012 2:53:04 PM PDT
As some kids are already back in class, others are getting ready to shift gears back to school-mode.

Part of that preparation should be setting a regular bedtime routine.

Sleep specialists says it is not too late to get kids back on a normal sleep schedule after summer break.

Jodi Mindell says a good night's rest is essential. It affects attention, concentration and memory in the classroom.

She says when kids don't get enough sleep, it's like sending them to school feeling jetlagged.

"So if you think about a teenager who's sleeping until noon, to all of a sudden to get up at 6 in the morning, to get ready for school it is impossible. It's basically going five time zones away," Mindell said.

And to get kids back into a healthy sleep routine, Mindell suggests:

  • set bedtime 15 minutes earlier each night leading up to the first day of school
  • have kids wake up 15 minutes earlier each day
  • cut back on caffeine late in the day
  • shut off all electronics, including the TV, cell phones, smartphones and computers at least an hour before going to sleep

    Of course, this is easier said than done but experts say kids will feel better on that first and second day of school if you ease them into this schedule.


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