The National Sleep Foundation (NSF) has convened the Sleep Time Recommendations Expert Panel (STREP) to update its recommendations for appropriate sleep times at every life stage. The NSF anticipates its recommendations to be released in January 2015.

“NSF recommended sleep times combine the best available evidence with expert opinion. As the nation’s leading organization focused on sleep health, it is our responsibility to ensure that we regularly revisit these estimates with an updated literature review and improved methodology,” says Max Hirshkowitz, PhD, NSF scientific advisory council chair, in a release.

James Perrin, MD, FAAP, president of the American Academy of Pediatrics, says, “The American Academy of Pediatrics is pleased to be a member of the NSF Sleep Time Recommendations Expert Panel. Healthy sleep habits greatly enhance children’s development; and establishing a consistent bedtime routine early in life can help them grow into happy, strong, and healthy adults.”

The STREP is comprised of a multidisciplinary team of experts in sleep and from other scientific fields to formulate the updated recommendations for age-specific sleep need. The organizations represented on the expert panel include:
• American Academy of Pediatrics
• American Association of Anatomists
• American College of Chest Physicians
• American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists
• American Geriatrics Society
• American Neurological Association
• American Physiological Society
• American Psychiatric Association
• American Public Health Association
• Gerontological Society of America
• Human Anatomy and Physiology Society

“There remains a need to better correlate sleep with broader health, social, educational, and occupational outcomes,” says David Neubauer, MD, the American Psychiatric Association’s representative on the STREP. “Evidence suggests impairments in all of these areas, and interdisciplinary collaboration will help improve our understanding of these relationships and lead to better recommendations for optimal sleep.”

“The NSF’s leadership in organizing this important activity and subsequent efforts to make the information available to the public and professionals is a critical step to improving sleep health in America,” says J. Catesby Ware, PhD, professor and chief of the Division of Sleep Medicine at Eastern Virginia Medical School.