We all know how important it is for us to have rest and relaxation..time to unwind. In the same way, proper sleep is essential for many of our body functions to work properly..not to mention our attitudes. Sleep is Essential for Teens! What has prompted me to write about such things?
We had an extremely busy weekend…more than the usual..which is extreme! I could barely drag myself out of bed this morning and my brain was so foggy. After taking some time to wake I went upstairs to wake my 13 year old daughter for school. The response, “I already know!” in a very grumbly voice. So I left…I’ve learned not to respond or take these things too personal.
My son sets his own alarm so I left him alone. I went downstairs to have a little more quiet time before the whole house was awake and I had to start breakfast. Checking my emails…peacefully..my daughter comes down..jerks open the freezer..opens a carton of ice cream and says “Who ate all the strawberry ice cream!!”
Ok..Why in the world did she do that? Since when did ice cream become an issue at 6:00 in the morning? She throws open the drawer and grabs a bagel and puts it in the toaster. Our dog LOVES toast..that’s because my husband gives him pieces of his toast..so now when anyone has something from the toaster the dog is under your feet the whole time your making it, begging for his share.
That did not go over so well with my daughter this morning. I looked over at her as she began to tell our dog how stupid he was and how if he didn’t get away from her she was going to put him outside! She said this in a much meaner tone than I’m making it.
I realized I had not heard my son get up and hop in the shower so I decided I better head up to his room and make sure he was up. Nope, he wasn’t. “It’s 6:17..get up” I said in this nice voice..”I KNOW!!” he shouts. “Well if you know then why aren’t you up? Get up now..your running late.” I say. “I KNOW” he shouts..Oh boy..I’m going to slip out of here…
Sleep is Essential for Teens!
Did you know:
- Sleep is so important to our well-being, as important as the air we breathe, the water we drink and the food we eat. It can even help teens to eat better and manage their stress better.
- Biological sleep patterns shift toward later times for both sleeping and waking during adolescence – meaning it is natural to not be able to fall asleep before 11:00 pm.
- Teens need about 9 1/4 hours of sleep each night to function best (for some, 8 1/2 hours is enough). But most teens do not get this amount of sleep at all. One study found that only 15% reported sleeping 8 1/2 hours on school nights. That’s not too many is it.
- Teens tend to have irregular sleep patterns across the week – they typically stay up late and sleep in late on the weekends, which can affect their biological clocks and hurt the quality of their sleep.
- Some teens suffer from treatable sleep disorders, such as narcolepsy, insomnia, restless legs syndrome or sleep apnea.
Do you think that most teens average about 8 1/2 hours to 9 1/4 of sleep a night? NO WAY! If they stay up until 11:00 and have to be up by 6..that’s 7 hours..That is IF they fall asleep by 11:00. My teen texted me at Midnight last night saying that he could not fall asleep. Ugh!
Too much over stimulation and late nights this weekend!
I’ve read a lot of different ideas on how to suggest your teens get enough sleep. However sooner or later they must take responsibility for there own sleep habits. They are smart. Here are some of the things I do to try to get my teens to have good sleep habits:
- No texting once in bed..phones OFF
- No computer right before bed. Too much Facebook and friend stimulation isn’t relaxing right before bed
- Also no over stimulating Gaming on Game Station right before bed
- We try to watch something really low key on TV with the girls..like “I Love Lucy or Andy Griffith” something silly. Our son stays up a little later so he is usually on the computer (in the same room) when we are watching. However he listens and chuckles.
- have a little bed time routine so that they are ready for the next day. Do a little mental checklist with your kids. This can relieve a lot of stress that kids can have for Monday mornings.
- We try to teach them to be good stewards of their bodies and part of that is letting them know that proper sleep is essential to healthy athletic bodies.
We try to remind them that God created night time for sleep. It was His idea that our bodies rest. That it’s a time when our bodies heal and grow.
Even with being diligent to help my teens be be good stewards of there bodies and time, it is still difficult for a teen to get the sleep they need.
An overly busy weekend at our house can turn into an ugly Monday morning if we are not careful. How about you? Do you have suggestions?
I’ve heard it suggested that schools start later for the High School years and earlier for the elementary years. What do you think about that idea?