DEAR MAYO CLINIC: My 12-year-old son goes to bed each night around 10 p.m. but usually cannot fall asleep until 1 or 2 in the morning. Is this normal for a “tween,” or should I talk to his doctor? What are some things that could cause insomnia in someone his age?
ANSWER: Lots of children your son's age have trouble falling asleep easily at night. In many cases, the reason for this can be traced back to habits a child has developed that interfere with good sleep. Less often, it may be due to a sleep disorder.
Before you see a doctor, check to make sure your son’s routines are sleep-friendly. For example, one of the best ways to ensure healthy sleep is setting a consistent wake-up time and sticking to it. The wake-up time doesn’t have to be exactly the same time every day, but it should be within a two-hour window.