Teens are not getting the recommended amount of sleep

Research from healthline news have proven that 73% of teens aren’t getting the recommended amount of sleep which is 8-10 hours. 


A lack of sleep can cause mood changes, fatigue, irritability, and drowsiness. Some of these traits are fatal as many teens over the age of 15 are on the road and having drowsiness while driving can lead to severe injuries or even death.


“I don’t necessarily get 8-10 hours of sleep every night but I do try my best to reach that goal. The amount of sleep I get usually depends on the amount of homework I get within that day,” junior Isha Kargbo said.


It can also affect relationships that teens are forming with other students, teachers, and even family members. If teens are constantly in a bad or sleepy mood, many do not want to associate with someone of such low energy.


One of the leading factors to the lack of sleep that teens get is screen time. The national step foundation curated a poll where teens voted on whether or not teens bring technology in their rooms before going to bed.


“I don’t get the amount of sleep that I probably should because I stay up playing fortnite and I procrastinate on all lot of my homework,” said junior Marcelo Pozo 


Researchers found that three in four teenagers do bring in the appliances before going to bed which disrupts their sleep schedule. 


It is scientifically proven from the sleep foundation that the blue light that emits from screens acts very similar to sunlight in our minds. 


Screen time is directly linked to insomnia and it is described as a “host” for insomnia symptoms.  


This is because when we go on our screens before bed, we disrupt the release of melatonin which leads to a shorter and less beneficial nightly sleep. 


“I get about seven hours of sleep every night which isn’t scientifically recommended for my age group and I strive to increase my sleep intake every night. I manage my time correctly and I’m normally in bed my 12 pm every night which is why I get the amount of sleep that I do,” said junior athlete Miles Lanham 


Some of the leading consequences of  sleep deprivation are a weakened immune system and obesity. 


Another health factor that isn’t normally taken into consideration when teens skip out on sleep is the effect it has on their growth and development. A lot of the growth that teens undergo during puberty happens during their sleep so when that time is being decreased, it negatively affects their growth and overall health. 


There’s also scientific proof between the amount of sleep teens receive and the dopamine levels that they intake. 


Dopamine is a chemical that’s released which makes humans happy and is the chemical that releases joy within our bodies. 


When the amount of sleep someone get significantly decreases, those dopamine levels are decreased which can make the the person impulsive and vulnerable to bad decisions. 


Not only can sleep deprivation affect someone’s psychological chemical balance, but it can also suppress your appetite causing fatigue and nausea. 


If it becomes an ongoing pattern, then the long term effects can be dentremental and possibly fatal.


Some of those effects include being at high risk of a heart attack or stroke, lower fertility rates, and even mortality if bad enough. 


Lack of proper sleep can also cause cognitive issues where it can slow down your reaction time, cause problems with paying attention for long increments of time, and weaken your memory.  


Many of these illnesses are easily avoidable with building a realistic sleep routine that fits into your schedule. It’s important to take a break from any screens in your routine at least 30 minutes before you sleep so that your melatonin release is not disrupted and you get quality nightly sleep.