For sleeping questions and answers about school children and teens, go straight to the experts. Pediatricians and physicians can give you a wide variety of sleeping tips for teens, but it’s the people who actually see the effects of sleep deprivation in school students that can tell you more. Parents and teachers understand the connection of sleep and work, whether it’s school work or paid work at an actual job. Inattentiveness, irritability, lack of judgment, poor memory, anxiety, and mild depression can all rear their ugly heads when a teen doesn’t get the proper amount of sleep at night.
Does a lack of sleep affect your school work? Of course! If you haven’t slept in a while, your body will do whatever it can to try and catch up on those zzzzz’s. That means that while you’re trying to get through the day, your body is taking little “catnaps” without you even knowing it. As your body does this, you’ll find it much harder to concentrate or make decisions. It’s pretty hard to get excited about life when your body can think of nothing but sleep.
If you’re wondering how sleep deprivation affects school performance, have a conversation with a high school teacher. He or she has probably seen a fair share of sleep deprived teens. Behavioral problems, anxiety, depression, absenteeism and forgetfulness are all signs of a sleep deprived teen. The worst part is the effect it has on the teen’s social life and grades.
So, what causes sleep problems in school children? Like adults, any number of things can trigger sleep problems including general anxiety, worries, hunger, being overtired, not having sufficient time to unwind at the end of the day, fear, allergies, etc. Depending on their ages, children aren’t likely going to be able to articulate the fact that they’re not sleeping, or what they think the reason for their sleep problems could be. That’s up to the parents, guardians, and other adult figures in the child’s life. It could be a matter of finally buying new pillows and a new mattress for the teen’s bed, having a heart-to-heart with your teen about the things going on in his or her life, and working actively with the child to eliminate unnecessary stressors.
Sleep and school performance go hand-in-hand, so make sure the transition from a busy day to a restful night’s sleep is smooth, and eliminate the types of things that tend to make sleep less than restorative. SleepBetter.org has additional sleeping tips for teens that also may help them in getting a better night’s rest.