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how much sleep does a 6 year old need?

(9 Posts)
marykat2004 Thu 09-Sep-10 21:41:25

There seems to be lots about toddler sleep and baby sleep but nothing about children sleeping on here.

DD has been getting worse over the end of last term, summer and beginning of this term.

We put her to bed between 7:30 and 8 pm. She won't go sleep until around 10pm , always getting out of bed ans asking for things and saying she can't sleep. I refuse to give her food at these times as she should have eaten in the day time.

She goes into overdrive around 7 to 7:30 pm and gets really hyper and just will not go to sleep. We do have a routine, bath, pajamas, story, brush teeth. We have unwinding time and nothing works.

She is tired and does not want to get up for school in the morning.

Of course we are going to get blamed for her poor school work because she is tired all the time but we can't force her to go to sleep.

dietcokeandwine Thu 09-Sep-10 23:01:48

I'll be interested to see responses to this. We have had some issues with 6 year old DS too, he's always been the kind of child you could put to bed and he'd drift off to sleep quite happily within 30 minutes or so but in the last six months we've had a lot of bedtime procrastination (requests for drinks/shouting out that he 'just needs to tell you something'/saying he needs the loo and so on) for a good hour or so after being put to bed. He too is put to bed between 7:30 and 8pm and similar bedtime routine, but is rarely asleep before 9pm.

We make sure he has plenty of exercise and lots of fresh air but nothing seems to make a difference! And even falling asleep later he is usually awake independently by 7am. Maybe they just start needing less sleep?

marykat2004 Fri 10-Sep-10 13:39:45

Well, I don't know, but at least ONE person replied - you!

'just need to tell you something' - yep, we get that, DD will do ANYTHING not to go to bed.

But are all the other 6 year olds really not having trouble?

Someone told me it has to do with when they start losing teeth... but no on has given me a solution!


nikki1978 Fri 10-Sep-10 13:45:52

DD has turned 6 today and I think she sleeps about 10 and a half to 11 hours at night. She also does the 'I need to tell you something' and mucks about a bit but we are very firm and say she needs to lay down and close her eyes now and if she mucks about she is in trouble. She has to stay in her room from 7.30 when we put her to bed and then we just have to keep going up to tell her to lie back down if she gets up. It gets boring after a while I guess so she is usually asleep within half an hour.

Do you let her stay up if she says she doesn't want to go to bed?

marykat2004 Fri 10-Sep-10 15:23:56

Oh no, we don't let her stay up. She just keeps getting out of bed and asking for things like food or milk. She does have milk in her room and often empties it before going to sleep. She is fully night-trained for a few years, and has not had an accident at night, though i think she does get up and use the toilet in the night. She doesn't wake us up, though, for night time toilets. I noticed when we were on holiday that she only really uses the loo at night maybe once a week. I guess cutting out milk is something we could do, or at least making it clear that she can't have more when she finishes her glass. But since she has kept dry, i have allowed the milk to creep up again (we tried to cut it out when night-training).

whoknewitwouldbethiscrazy Thu 13-Jun-13 13:30:56

I am a mumsnet virgin, this is my first comment I think ! I am having exactly the same issues with my son ( just 6 ) and have been reading everything for some solutions. He goes to bed at 8pm, he's allowed to look at a book till 8.30pm when it's lights out, but he's often still awake at 9.30 -10pm. He gets very anxious, scared he'll have a bad day at school because he's tired, cries and frets. We don't let he get up, we try to calm him but don't stay with him.

I am considering just letting him keep the light on/read/play in bed until he wants to go to sleep instead of trying to force him into sleep earlier ( which really isn't working!)
His teacher tells me he's tired, and his behaviour goes downhill when he's tired too. He goes to bed much better in the holidays, but maybe that's because I'm more relaxed about it too.

I am interested in how you got over this, as I see your post was 3 years ago....can you give me any light at the end of the tunnel over this ?

Waitingforbaby Thu 13-Jun-13 21:10:21

Welcome to Mumsnet!
Unfortunately I don't have any words of wisdom but just to say that I'm having similar issues with my DD1 who is 6. I wonder whether she just doesn't need that much sleep anymore. Unfortunately though she shares a room with her sister who is 3. I could separate them but I think they would both be upset to go into different rooms but I suppose then I could let DD1 read until she was tired.

whoknewitwouldbethiscrazy Thu 13-Jun-13 22:45:46

I just tried letting him have his bed light on till he was tired and wanted to go to sleep, as I couldn't face the worrying, tears and anxiety ( me and him) and thought giving him a bit of control of his situation would help.
It didn't go well! At 10.30pm he was having a lovely game with his cars in bed...DH went up, got cross because he was still up, tears, worrying and anxiety followed..he always worry's he'll have a bad day at school tomorrow.
Maybe he's too young for self regulation !!

whoknewitwouldbethiscrazy Thu 13-Jun-13 22:47:48

Thanks for the reply Waitingforbaby, at least I only have one to worry about ! Hope things get better for you soon. x

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