A new study published in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health suggests that sleeping late in the night and not having a fixed time of going to bed each night tended to negatively affect children's brains.
The study was conducted by researchers at University College London who observed the sleeping patterns of more than 11,000 seven-year-olds in Britain.
The researchers compared the sleeping patterns of children when they were at the ages of three, five and seven, with how well they did with their learning and found that those who slept after 9 PM tended to score lower in reading and math compared to others.
The researchers said that one of the major reasons could be that lack of sleep disrupted the natural body rhythms in children and interfered with how well the brain learns new information. "The take-home message is really that routines really do seem to be important for children. Establishing a good bedtime routine early in childhood is probably best, but it's never too late", lead researcher Prof Amanda Sacker said.