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Waking Up In Middle School

If you walked into a middle school classroom you would probably notice several students having a hard time staying awake and alert. The teenager of today is a sleepless, exhausted student who is bogged down with homework, after-school recreations, and other day-to-day activities. This causes teens to get a lack of sleep and creates problems such as not doing well in academics, being unable to make confident decisions, and having health problems such as sleep disorders. The average teenager is a sleep deprived student who typically struggles to keep up in school due to academic stress, social activities, and excessive amounts of homework.

Staying up late and waking up in the dark to get ready for school is not giving growing teens the quality sleep they require. Students long for hours of sleep to catch up on all of the sleep debt accumulated over the week. After school, students have hefty loads of required homework. This forces teenagers to stay up late to finish their work, and then they are not ready to wake up early to get to classes. This gives little time for proficient sleeping to occur during the night. Many students also have multiple activities that consume all of their afternoon and evening, giving those students minimal amounts of sleep.

Studies have proven students who do not receive sufficient amounts of sleep are more likely not to perform as well in school, sports, or any other activities throughout their daily lives. Overall, teenagers get more out of their education if they are awake, ready to learn, and have had an adequate amount of rest. Even though academics does play a role in the teenagers sleep debt, there are alternative factors to consider. One other cause of sleep loss is the change your circadian rhythm, also known as an internal clock. As youth undergo adolescence, their circadian rhythm changes and starts to tell them to go to bed at a later time.

This is due to a hormone called melatonin. Melatonin makes you sleepy and tells your body it is time to rest. In teenagers, melatonin is released later at night than adults or younger children, so their bodies want to go to sleep later and wake up later too. Because teens cannot fall asleep, they turn to electronics for entertainment during the long nights. However, the blue light emitted from these mobile devices can disrupt their internal clock as well, making sleep even more difficult to come by. Teenagers will lose sleep for many reasons, but a piece of it is growing up and the changes that accompany it.

Yet, electronics are partially to blame for time spent on a screen instead of the much needed rest vital to teens. Many of the causes of sleep deprived teenagers have drastic effects on a their daily life. A couple of results related to risks of staying up late and waking early is being at a greater level of endangerment from automobile accidents, depression, and exhaustion. Teenagers also have a higher probability of racking up sleep deficit, known as sleep debt. Lack of sleep could lead to many of these possibilities. When teens are tired, they are not as alert and as awake as they should be.

This usually makes them careless drivers and not as safe as they would be if they went to bed early enough and slept soundly. Without a good night’s sleep, they are much more likely to be in a car accident, or they could not perform as well at work. Teens with shortages of sleep are also more likely to be depressed and have a pessimistic view about the world. “According to a 2010 study published in the journal Sleep, they are more likely to be depressed and to entertain thoughts of suicide if a parent sets a late bedtime of midnight or beyond. ” All of these risks are unnecessary, and they could be prevented by simply sleeping.

Plus, teenagers could not only endanger themselves, but they could also injure someone else. Teenagers in this century also face many social pressures from peers and tend to not make the wisest decisions. They are more likely to take drugs, stay up late to text, and perceive sleep as something to overcome, which does not work in their favor. During the teen years, especially during this age of technology, there have been increasing amounts of peer pressure put on the shoulders of teens. As a result, many teenagers try out drugs, smoking, and various other things with their friends.

These stimulants can interrupt sleep patterns and do not allow for quality sleep. As all people know, teens are very social with one another. With improvements in electronics and technology a colossal number of kids and teenagers have their own phones. They tend to use phones late at night to text or interact with friends, which can also disrupt their sleep patterns due to the blue light emitted from them. Sleep is also a barrier in the mind of a teenager. It takes time away from other activities they could be doing, and teens see it as something they need to overcome or conquer.

This also is a factor that keeps teens awake in the late hours of the night. All over the world teens are facing these problems daily, but with enough sleep they have the capability to make superior decisions by saying no to drugs, turning off phones at night, and just going to sleep. Along with other hazards of not getting enough sleep, teenagers with lofty amounts of sleep debt can suffer from insomnia, sleep apnea, and delayed sleep phase syndrome. These disorders can make rest even more difficult than it ordinarily would be. A teenager could suffer from any of these, but the most common of the three would be delayed sleep phase syndrome.

It is also known as the “night owl” effect and causes teens not to fall asleep easily. Sleep apnea is also a fairly usual symptom in a tired teen. During sleep, it causes difficulty breathing, heavy sweating, and makes teens more irritable and cranky during the day because of the lack of quality sleep. A less normal sleep disturbance is insomnia. Insomnia is when you cannot fall asleep at all, or very little, and it makes you extremely exhausted during the day. On top of that, insomnia will last longer the more a teen worries about it, so those who stress out about it will have it even longer than those who do not.

Even though teens can experience these disorders from not getting enough rest, they are usually treatable and all you have to do to avoid them is to make sure you get enough sleep. Studies have also shown the teenagers who obtain larger quantities of sleep tend to remember, memorize, and learn at a higher level than those who do not. The amount of sleep acquired determines the amount the person can remember and at the rate at which someone can learn. Research has proven sleeping actually allows you to achieve better test scores and you retain more knowledge after a good night’s sleep.

Parents, over the years, have also found their kids do better on tests if they get good rest. They simply learn the test material better. Moreover, scientists have found if teenagers get the appropriate amount of rest at night, their memorization and learning skills are at a much higher level than those who do not get sufficient sleep. In conclusion, teens should make sure they get ample amounts of sleep. This will help them improve their academic success, provide them with clear minds for making good decisions, and lead them toward a happy, healthy lifestyle, free from sleeping disorders and depression.

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