Mindfulness Training Helps Children Sleep Better

Mindfulness Training Helps Children Sleep Better
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Insomnia is a very widespread disorder, and it can even be hereditary. Luckily enough, there are ways to treat it. In the US alone, about 70 million people have to deal with some level of insomnia.

According to CNN, children from elementary school were able to sleep an average of 74 extra minutes per night after following a method of mindfulness training. The improvement in sleep included more minutes of rapid eye movement (REM), which is considered a remarkable achievement.

Improvement in sleep occurred within three months

Ruth O’Hara, who is a senior study author and a professor in the psychiatry and behavioural sciences department at Stanford University, stated as quoted by CNN:

Rapid eye movement is a very important phase of sleep for neuronal development and for the development of cognitive and emotional function,
So it was a striking finding for us, and we were somewhat surprised at the substantial amount of benefits we saw in the quality of the children’s sleep.

O’Hara also adds that the kids who used the techniques more often at home had bigger benefits in sleep. On the other hand, those children who didn’t receive mindfulness training lost about 64 minutes of sleep for the same period of two years.

Christina Chick, who is a postdoctoral scholar in psychiatry and behavioural sciences at Stanford, declared as also quoted by CNN:

Older children are possibly staying up to do homework or talk or text with friends,
I interpret our findings to mean that the curriculum was protective, in that it taught skills that helped protect against those sleep losses.

Previous studies have shown that most children aged between 5 and 12 years old need at least 10-11 hours of sleep per night.

The new study was published in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine.


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Cristian Antonescu

Even since he was a child, Cristian was staring curiously at the stars, wondering about the Universe and our place in it. Today he's seeing his dream come true by writing about the latest news in astronomy. Cristian is also glad to be covering health and other science topics, having significant experience in writing about such fields.

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