Adolescents are the notorious holders of sleep deprivation. The day a human being reaches early adulthood into adolescents is the day that changes and the teen’s circadian rhythm ( biological clock) shifts, deviating from what was previously a nine o’clock sleep schedule to an eleven o’clock sleep schedule. This shift loses the teen two hours of less sleep than children and adults, and two hours less than what is needed.
According to Nationwidechildrens.org “ the average amount of sleep that an adolescent gets is between 7 and 7 ¼ hours of rest.”
Studies show teenagers need 9 to 9 ½ hours of sleep. Tessa Bass, a Camas Sophomore says “I average five to six hours of sleep each night sometimes less when I have AP Biology homework. The next day I feel drained and lacking.”
What also attributes to the sleep deprivation among teens is school start times. Some schools start even as early as seven, prompting teenagers to get up as early as five. With most teenagers going to bed by 11 and then getting up at five and six weighs a heavy burden on the overall health of a teenager and their energy provided from rest.
Not scheduling enough time to regenerate with sleep can build into a sleep deficit, where a student can’t concentrate, study, or work efficiently. Sleep deprivation among adolescents varies in a number of impactful aspects of functioning. Some of which are mood, behavior, cognitive abilities and academic performance. Mood: causes an adolescent to be moody, irritable, cranky and less self-control regarding their mood. Behavior: A teen is more likely to engage in risk-taking behaviors like drinking or other possibly dangerous activities. Cognitive abilities and academic performance: Adolescents struggle with attaining information, decision making, creative skills and overall focus and awareness in class.
On the contrary to popular belief, catching up on sleep on the weekends grants short-term satisfaction, but alters and skews a teenager’s sleep schedule, making it more difficult to get sufficient sleep. A possible solution or step towards receiving decent sleep is to maintain a healthy, regular sleep schedule where said teen goes to sleep and wakes up around the same time each day.