According to Reuters, a New Zealand study found that many parents have a poor understanding of how much sleep their child needs.

One in four parents thought children need less sleep than is recommended, while one in five thought children need more sleep than what experts advise.

Many parents also reported that TV watching, playing, and late dinners interrupted their kids’ regular bedtimes.

“Children who have insufficient sleep are more likely to have difficulties with their attention, mood, learning, health, and behavior at home and at school,” said lead author Philippa McDowall of the University of Otago in New Zealand.

“Parents need to know how important it is for children to have sufficient sleep, and that (they) can support this by ensuring their child has a healthy and consistent sleep routine,” McDowall added by email.

When children are having sleep problems, educating parents is often the first step for treatment, the researchers write in Sleep Medicine.

They say mothers often have less knowledge about sleep than other areas of child development.

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