When you’re a teen, staying up late is the norm. After a busy day at school, you want to hang out with friends, get in another round of a gaming or finish a school assignment. Whatever the case may be, constant late nights can actually be detrimental to your physical and mental health.
On average, teens get around seven and a half hours of sleep per night. Studies suggest, however, that they should get between nine and nine and a half hours of sleep.
One study published in the Journal of Sleep Research showed that while persisting patterns of poor sleep habits can lead to longer term issues like high cholesterol, obesity and depression, there are shorter term health risks as well. These include heightened stress and anxiety as well as a lowered immune system, leading to contracting more colds and flus than other teens.
Image: Betta Living
So what are the best tips for helping your teens get enough sleep? Establish long lasting, regular sleep rhythms, experts suggest. Creating a binge-like cycle on the weekends where teens tend to sleep in late messes with circadian sleep rhythms and creates an effect that’s not unlike jetlag. Instead, encourage your teen to avoid staying up too late and help them to wake up at a similar time every morning.
Putting electronics away at night time, at least half an hour before bed, can also help with restlessness and problems fall asleep. Turn down the lights for a few hours before bedtime and encourage your teens to put away their screen and pick up a book instead.
Always keep in mind that having a good sleep pattern is part of keeping your teen’s mind and body healthy.
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