Sleeping well for health

Getting enough sleep is one of the most important things you can do to protect your health and wellbeing.

Sleeping well makes you feel more alert, energetic, better able to concentrate and perform daily tasks. It can also help you cope with challenges and get along with the people around you.

How much sleep is enough?

Sleep requirements change as you get older. In general, you should aim for 8 hours of sleep per day. However, infants, children and teenagers require more sleep than adults. [1]

Good quality sleep is beneficial for mental health outcomes across all age groups but is critical for children and teenagers. It improves their mood, helps regulate emotions, and protects against anxiety, depression and low self-esteem. [2]

What is 'sleep hygiene'?

Sleep hygiene refers to the habits that help you to have a good night’s sleep. Common sleep problems, like insomnia, are often caused by bad habits that build up over time, but making some minor adjustments to lifestyle and attitude can improve sleep quality. [3

Learn more about the sleep requirements for different age groups and healthy sleep habits that you can build into your routine with our infographic.

[1] Hirshkowitz, M. (2015) The National Sleep Foundation's sleep time duration recommendations: methodology and results summary. Sleep Health, 1 (1), pp. 40-43.
[2] VicHealth. (2018) Sleep and mental wellbeing: exploring the links. Carlton South, Victorian Health Promotion Foundation. 
[3] Better Health Channel. (2014) Sleep hygiene (accessed on 4 April 2020).

Page last updated: Tuesday, 8 March 2022