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  • S.D. Dela Cruz

More Sleep Equals Better Solutions

The effects of sleep deprivation and the benefits of getting more sleep.

Sleep deprivation is a condition that can be caused by a lack of quality and quantity sleep. Not getting enough sleep has been linked to a number of health problems, such as mood changes, trouble with thinking and concentration, and accidents.

Studies have shown that about 70% of teens don’t get that amount of sleep. Teens need a recommended nine hours of sleep each night to help their developing brains.

During the teenage years, the body's circadian rhythm, the body's 24 hour internal clock that regulates bodily functions, changes and teens may experience a delay in sleep for about two hours.

According to a Farrington High School teacher, “during puberty, teenagers are more likely to feel tired and sleepy later on.”

The body releases a sleep hormone called melatonin at later times, which causes teens to fall asleep later at night and wake up later in the morning.

Electronic devices are known to produce blue light, which keeps our brains active and can make it difficult for us to fall asleep. Studies have shown that two or more hours of screen time in the evening can disturb the melatonin production needed for sleep.

Other factors such as part-time jobs, stress, fear of missing out, and caffeine to include energy drink, all play a part in sleep deprivation.

According to a Farrington High School student, “an important factor to being able to balance school life and getting enough sleep is time management.”

One way to get more sleep is to have a routine. Keeping a consistent schedule, even on the weekend, can help you to regulate your sleep/wake schedule.

Winding down before bed can help put your mind in a relaxed state before sleeping. Winding down can include reading a book, journaling, and turning off your phone.

Exercising and getting your body moving can help you to tire yourself out for bedtime. Another Farrington High School teacher stated, “one method is to tire themselves out in advance so that when it is time, they should sleep at about 8 p.m at night.”

Sleep can have a positive impact on your hormones and can help you to maintain your mood. While you sleep, your brain has a way of processing emotions, which can help you to recognize and react to certain things in the right way.

When you get enough sleep, you are less likely to get sick and have a lower chance of getting serious health problems such as heart disease, and diabetes.

Getting enough sleep has been linked to improved academic performance, reduced stress, and health. Sleep improves the ability to learn and retain information. When you are able to stay focused and learn, you have the ability to improve your grades.

Taking care of your health and getting an adequate amount of sleep might be the key to help you to be more successful in school.

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