Some teenagers are having sleep disorders due to several factors. Staying up late at night, hard to be awaken in the morning, and sacrifices sleeping time are very common among teenagers these days. When it comes to making decisions on how to manage their time properly, teenagers usually do not put great importance to getting enough hours of sleep. Since sleep is considered to be the “food for the brain”, teenagers should ideally get 9 hours and 15 minutes of sleep every night for them to function best in school and maintain optimal daytime alertness, yet getting at least 8 hours and 30 minutes of sleep can also be enough for others.
Sleep Deprivation: Teens’ Circadian Rhythm:
Everyone has their own circadian rhythm also know as 24-hour internal body clock that regulates sleep cycles. During school age years, the circadian rhythm naturally direct children to fall asleep 8 pm, however, when puberty changes start to happen in adolescents, the circadian rhythm will usually change and direct most adolescence to fall asleep later at night.
Sleep Deprivation: Factors that can Affect the Circadian Rhythm of Teenagers
There are several factors that can affect sleep cycles of teenagers, as mentioned earlier, puberty changes is one. Aside from the changes of the circadian rhythm during puberty, there are still a lot of different factors that can contribute to the disruption of the circadian rhythm’s normal process:
Staying up late to study
Accomplishing school reports and any other homework
Drinking caffeinated beverages, such as sodas, coffee, and tea
Social networking websites, such as Facebook, MySpace, and Twitter
Electronic Media, such as computers, televisions, tablets, game consoles, cellular phones
Effects of Sleep Deprivation:
Result Of Sleep Deprivation -Teenager Sleeping During Class
For teenagers, they think that not getting enough amount of sleep every night is fine. However, sleep deprivation can have negative effects physically and mentally. Not getting enough sleep can cause:
Difficulty to concentrate and learn new things in school
Low academic grades
Can’t easily recall important information, such as names, assignments, numbers, etc.
Pimples and other skin problems
May show early signs of skin aging
Mood swings that may result in an inappropriate and unaccepted behavior
Weight gain, since sleep deprivation causes hormonal changes that affect the appetite
Increases the risk of developing Lifestyle diseases, such as hypertension, Alzheimer’s disease, atherosclerosis, diabetes, etc.
Accidents can happen, because of a decrease of alertness level
It is very important for both teenagers and their parents to know what can be the possible consequences of sleep deprivation and other sleep disorders, for them to work and plan together in finding ways to manage the situation and condition.