Back-to-School Sleep Loss Can Lead to Unnecessary Stress

American families face a period of significant transition each year in August, as they transition from a summer sleep schedule to a school schedule. Not only are summer vacations coming to an end for elementary and high school students, millions of families are preparing to send students to college for the first time. The stresses associated with the experience can have an impact on quality of life, and it can be difficult to transition.

“There’s no doubt about it, this is a season of major adjustment for many families,” said Dan Schecter, vice president of consumer products at Carpenter Co. and creator of SleepBetter.org. “After a period of vacations at the beach, trips to see relatives and lots of staying up late at night, it’s time to try to re-establish family sleep routines.”

Schecter says getting back into a normal and healthy pattern before the school year starts is critical. Continuing to stay up late while getting up early for school can lead to sleep deprivation, which studies have shown can cause inattentiveness’, irritability, lack of judgment, poor memory, anxiety, and even depression.

Here are some back-to-school tips from SleepBetter.org:

  • Work before school starts to ease back into the routine of getting up early. Get up a little earlier each morning, until you reach the time when you’ll get up for school.
  • Try to find regular times for going to bed and getting up in the morning and stick to the routine, even on weekends.
  • Listen to your body! When it’s tired, go to bed!
  • Kids and adults should stop playing stimulating video games well before bedtime.
  • Try to create a good sleep environment (yes, this can be a challenge in a freshman dormitory!)
  • Avoid the temptation of late-night pizza (another major challenge at college!)
  • Make sure your bedding is clean and fresh. As junior heads off to college, maybe it’s time for him to give up the cartoon sheets and pillows he’s been using since 5th grade.

For more sleep advice targeted to specific times of year and different situations, be sure to check out the articles on SleepBetter’s Sleep Solutions page!

Latest from Twitter

Follow us on Twitter

Subscribe to Our Newsletter