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So now that you understand circadian rhythm, you might be wondering just how much sleep you need to keep yours in check.
You've probably figured out by now how many hours of sleep you need per night to avoid feeling lethargic the next day. Now compare it to the expert calculations. Here is what the experts say about the amount of sleep you need.
Sleep requirements differ from one person to the next, depending on age, physical activity levels, general health and other individual factors. But in general:
- Primary school children need nine to 10 hours. Studies show that increasing your child's sleep by as little as half an hour can dramatically improve school performance.
- Teenagers need about 9 to 10 hours too. Teenagers have increased sleep requirement at the time when social engagements and peer pressure cause a reduction in sleep time.
- Adults need about 8 hours, depending on individual factors. We tend to need less sleep as we age, but be guided by your own state of alertness - if you feel tired during the day, aim to get more sleep.