In today’s day and age where kids are exposed to digital distractions just as much as their adult counterparts, it is difficult to comprehend the amount of good it does to their growth. With parents worried and sick about the repercussions and cause of a troubled sleep-cycle of their adolescent, we are here to discuss today exactly how much sleep should a teenager get.
Sleep is a crucial component of a growing kid’s life as it directly attributes to their physical and mental development. An average kid must get at least 8 to 10 hours of sound sleep if he wants to have a fulfilling day of academia or doesn’t want to stumble on the sports ground. It’s unfortunate that a growing adolescent doesn’t usually get a good 8 to 10 sleep on a daily basis, let alone on a school night.
Firstly, Let’s Kick in Reasons of Exactly the Essentiality of Adequate Sleep is in a Teen’s Progressing Age.
A well-slept person will automatically have a healthier body by giving our bodies enough time to rewire for another hectic day’s activities. Sleep is directly linked to poorer grades. It is a vicious circle – academics and sleep. But we can give you a head start on how to avoid it. Lesser sleep directly affects concentration and indulges one in feeling drowsy. Dulled concentration and drowsiness refrains a kid from paying full attention in class, acing on a test, or getting ahead in athletics.
According to research by National Sleep Foundation of America, it is found that above 25% of high schools kids fall asleep in class owing to unfulfilled sleep directly linking to unsatisfactory performance in class. Lacking on knowledge of how much sleep a teenager should get, parents don’t realize the bigger picture forming. Sleep deprivation could not only be a cause of sadness, depression, and anxiety but also be caused by it.
A report by National Highway Safety Traffic Authority, about 100,000 accidents, 30,0000 injuries, and 1600 casualties occur every year due to drowsy driving. Most of the citizens suffering from these unfortunate accidents fall below age category of 25. This alarming rate of accidents caused due to drowsiness or tired driving should be enough to bring caution to your family’s sleep habits.
For an adolescent going through the second stage of development in life, adequate sleep is an essential factor for cognitive maturation. It helps them in regularizing the process of a developing brain and physical growth spurts. Teens that have an accustomed sleep schedule are also known to stay away from depression or drug abuse. Would one need more reasons to hit snooze?
Secondly, Let’s Get to How Much Sleep Should a Teenager Get?
Let’s cover the basics to understand the workings of our biological clocks. Depending on a person’s age group, the person’s body responds better to activities during a certain period in the day also known as a change in their circadian rhythm. As people age, their biological clock resets, which is called “Chronotypes;” thus, their preferences change in the certain period of the day. For instance, the Chronotype in adolescents and teens leads them to prefer doing activities in the afternoon through the evening.
In the recent times, it has been noted teens, and late teens are more productive from late afternoon up to wee hours late at night. Does this help explain why your teen is super enthusiastic in the evening compared to mornings where they don’t even mumble legible greetings?
With changed bio clocks and early school timings, it’s not out of the regular to see a kid trying to fit in 6 to 7 hours of sleep on school nights instead of the appropriate 9 to 9.5 hours. With the increased amount of to-do’s on their plate, you can’t blame them. But as parents, you can try to set sleep schedules and help them stick to it. It is essential that after a fulfilling day, their developing bodies and minds get enough time to unwind and re-energize for the following day.
Set a wake time and monitor the nap hours, if any. Do not let them nap for more than 30-45 minutes in odd hours of the day or you may find them wide awake in the middle of the night. You can let them snooze a little extra during weekends to make up for lost sleep during the hectic weekdays. Anything between an extra 30 minutes to an hour won’t harm their sleep schedule. Every teen is different, so monitor their sleep schedules and make any necessary changes in diet or sleep hours or overly exhausting activities on a regular basis.
Are they getting enough sleep? If not, what is your call of action as parents?
For your kid’s sake, hope that they’re getting enough sleep. But more often than not, you might be mistaken. If your kid displays any of the following behaviors, be sure to make necessary life adjustments.
- Difficulty in waking up in the mornings
- Ineffective concentration
- Falling asleep in classes
- Uncontrolled mood swings
- Unusual aggressiveness or social withdrawal
- Difficulty in grasping lessons
If you notice any such emotional, social, academic or physical signs in your kid, do not take it for granted. Cut down any evening caffeine, make necessary dietary alterations and monitor the amount of physically exhaustive activities your kid might be involved in. Excessive physical exertion through the day in multiple sports might not be as productive as you think. Make no mistake; nutrition plays an equally vital role in a kid’s growth and development.
Lastly, It Would Help Your Purpose a Lot if Your Kid Knew the Importance of Enough Sleep.
Adequate sleep for their age implies nothing more or less than 8-10 hours of sleep. Excessive sleep could be just as harmful. It results in low energy throughout the day, antisocial behavior and abnormal meal timings.
If you had a sit-down with your kid and explained the implications of their sleep schedule, maybe they would adhere better to the rules. Parents can help kids develop and establish healthy habits that they may continue to carry on as adults too.