New study: Irregular sleep schedules can lead to behavior proble - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

New study: Irregular sleep schedules can lead to behavior problems

According to a study by the National Sleep Foundation, a child’s sleep routine plays a big role in their behavior patterns. According to a study by the National Sleep Foundation, a child’s sleep routine plays a big role in their behavior patterns.
NEW MADRID, MO (KFVS) -

It’s important for your kids to get enough sleep, but it’s also important that they have a regular sleep schedule. According to a study by the National Sleep Foundation, a child’s sleep routine plays a big role in their behavior patterns.

Tonya Palmer is a mother of five. She says she knows how important sleep is but also knows that’s not all it takes.

"Kids love routine, they thrive on routine,” Palmer said. “You have nights that it's not going to go as planned but that structure, they thrive with that."

The Palmer kids have different bedtimes, which can be tough for the little ones to understand, but mom knows what’s best.

"Occasionally Emery says ‘Why am I 8:30 p.m. and they're 9:00 p.m.?' But, we started out the year and we were going to do nine and she was tired in the morning. We went back to 8:30 p.m. and it made a world of difference."

School counselors say sticking to a sleep routine keeps kids in line in the classroom.

"Lack of sleep can lead to irritability,” School Counselor Jason Rapert said. “If it happens on a regular basis, chronically, it can lead to feelings of depression."

Researchers at the National Sleep Foundation found kids who have irregular sleep schedules are more likely to have behavioral problems.

"Study after study has shown that kids who grow up in a stable environment, where there is structure, there are rules, those students do better,” Rapert said.

Not only does a structures sleep schedule lead to happier kids, but also happier parents.

"I turn on the light, it's time to get up, and they get up. I've never had that struggle, that's part of it because they're rested,’ Palmer said.

Palmer says one way she helps her kids stick to a sleep routine is by not putting TVs in their rooms. She says that way when it’s bedtime, her kids can get straight to sleep.

Copyright 2013 KFVS. All rights reserved.

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