By Carly D'Angelo: CB West Senior
Yes, I’m a high school student, and yes, I love my sleep. But I can never seem to get enough so that I’m not tired in the morning. Why is that? Is it because of the workload at school? Is it my social life? Do I need to go to bed earlier? There are many factors that contribute to my tiredness. My excuse is that I’m a busy teenager.
Research has shown that teens, out of any age group, don’t get enough sleep. On average, teens need around eight to nine hours of sleep each night. A recent study at Drexel University of students aged 12 to 18 found that "20 percent of those studied got the recommended eight or more hours of sleep during school nights with the rest getting less than eight hours. The average sleep for U.S. adolescents is seven hours..." Sleep deprivation is a major concern among researchers, parents, and educators.
For one thing, teenagers stay up late at night. Personally, my sleep habits are not that great. I find myself going to bed between 10 and 10:30 PM. A variety of things can contribute to this night-owl tendency among teens, including social life, caffeinated drinks, and electronics. Other factors include procrastination and personal schedules. The typical high school student, like myself, is involved with many different activities. I have a part time job, I volunteer at my local middle school, and I’ve been spending a lot of time researching my choices for college next year! You could say my plate is pretty full. Sometimes, I stay up late at night just to make sure I am on track with everything and that I am ready for the next new day.
If you don’t already know, high schools in the Central Bucks area start bright and early at 7:25 AM. So, if you think about it, I don’t go to bed until about 10:30 PM, and then I have to wake up around 5:45 AM so I have enough time to get myself ready. That is only about seven hours of sleep, which according to researchers, is not enough for the teenage body. I’ll admit that I go in to school almost every day looking and feeling tired. After much thought, I’ve come up with a few solutions to this problem that many teenagers, including myself, should try: