Strict bedtimes lead to better behavior, scientists find

It's something that most moms and dads know at a gut-level. Now scientists are confirming that setting a strict bedtime for little ones improves their behavior by the time they enter school.

A study looking at the sleep of 10,000 children at 3, 5, and 7 found that those with irregular bed times were more likely to have behavioral problems by the time they enter elementary school. They also read comments from moms and teachers.

"Sleep is important for everybody, but especially for little ones because it's so important for growth, in addition to learning, concentrating in school, and actually for good behavior during the day," said Dr. Jennifer Shu of the American Academy of Pediatrics.

The findings have been published in the journal Pediatrics.

There's good news in this report, too. The study found that when parents switched to a strict bedtime policy, their child's behavior improved.

Copyright 2013 WXIX. All rights reserved.