Study: More Sleep Could Equal Less Adolescent Delinquency

Scientist looking at data about delinquency and sleep say that the severity of delinquency seems to be directly linked to the severity of the delinquent’s sleep deficit.

The study was conducted by researchers at the University of Nebraska, and is published in the October 10 issue of the Journal of Youth and Adolescence.  It looked at data from 15 years ago that was part of a federally-funded study on adolescent health and risky behaviors.  The original study followed the behavior of more than 14,000 high school students.

University of Nebraska researchers say their evaluation of the data indicates that stu­dents who slept sev­en or few­er hours per night re­ported more delinquency such as van­dal­ism or theft, than stu­dents who slept the rec­om­mended eight to 10 hours.

Al­though the study could­n’t demonstrate that in­suffi­cient snooz­ing caused de­lin­quen­cy rath­er than, for ex­am­ple, the oth­er way around, “the find­ings sug­gest that sleep is an im­por­tant, and over­looked, di­men­sion of de­lin­quent be­hav­ior,” the re­search­ers wrote. They ar­gued that this as­pect de­serves fur­ther in­ves­ti­ga­t­ion.

Sources: and Journal of Youth and Adolescence