Naps beyond 2 may not benefits kids
Children who nap beyond the age of two may have poorer sleep quality overall, a new study suggests.
By the time a child is two, they are usually getting most of their sleep at night, however many still nap during the day as well. The length and quality of sleep toddlers get over a 24-hour period has a major impact on their health and development.
Australian researchers analysed studies on napping in children up to the age of five and found children who napped beyond the age of two took longer to fall asleep and also tended to sleep less at night.
However, the researchers were not able to find any definitive links between napping and behaviour or overall health.
They called for further research to assess the changes in sleep patterns in children during early childhood. However, they also suggested that if a pre-school child is having sleeping problems at night, their daytime sleeping routine should be considered as a possible cause.
“The impact of night sleep on children’s development and health is increasingly documented, but to date there is not sufficient evidence to indicate the value of prolonging napping, whether at home or in childcare contexts, once sleep has consolidated into night,” the team from Queensland University of Technology said.