Dr. Eduard Estivill participated in the Obra Social de La Caixa sleep habits program held recently at the Príncipe Felipe Auditorium in Oviedo. Estivill holds a PhD in Medicine from the University of Barcelona in the specialties of clinical neurophysiology and pediatrics. He insists that his books, for sleeping, eating and learning through play, are based on scientific knowledge.
In his appearance in Oviedo at the invitation of the La Caixa Foundation, this specialist pointed out that sleep is not the same at the age of 2, 15, 50 or 70. Sleep changes at each stage of life, and so do sleep disturbances.
According to Estivill, a child up to 4 years of age needs 11 to 12 hours of sleep per day and a nap of one hour. Between 7 and 8 years of age, they should sleep 10 to 11 hours. An adolescent needs 9 hours of sleep; an adult, between 7 and 8 hours, and an elderly person, over 65 years of age, needs between 5 and 6 hours of sleep with 2 or 3 short naps of 10 minutes throughout the day.
The most important development of a person is from birth to 5 years of age, it is the period in which we learn the most things and in which we go from lying down to walking upright, a change so important that there is no other like it throughout our lives.
When asked why a child sleeps poorly, the expert indicated that a young child sleeps poorly because he or she has bad habits. One of his recommendations is that the child should be allowed to cry intensely for three minutes before being held. In addition, the child should not be allowed to cry because that implies abandonment, what should be done is to teach him/her to sleep. Physicians make extensive use of other disciplines such as neurobiology, psychology or pedagogy.
Finally, Estivill pointed out that with less time it is possible to educate just as well. With half an hour with the child doing things right you can do the same as in many hours when you are with the child but do not pay the same attention to him/her.