Family Time: Consistent Bed Time Improves Kids' Behavior

October 17, 2013 Updated Oct 17, 2013 at 8:48 AM EDT

October 17, 2013 Updated Oct 17, 2013 at 8:48 AM EDT

Did the kids get to bed on time last night? They may behave better if they do.
A new British study finds 7-year old kids with irregular bedtimes may have more behavioral difficulties than children with regular bedtimes.

"Irregular bedtimes definitely lead to kids who are more tired during the day.
They don't eat right. They don't function well in school, and they're generally not
happy citizens," says Dr. Elaine Schulte of Cleveland Clinic Children's Hospital.

University College researchers in London collected data on more than 10,000
kids at ages 3, 5, and 7.
They were given information on the kids' bedtimes and behavior by their moms
and teachers.
Results show as children progressed through early childhood without a regular
bedtime, their behavior scores became worse, but children who switched to a more regular bedtime had clear improvements in their behavior.

"Kids who have a regular bedtime are much more likely to be compliant with
other things in their life like eating healthy, listening to what their parents
want them to do, cooperating and doing well in school," says Dr. Schulte.