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How To Sleep Better For Teens

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Support Their Autonomy And Emphasize Their Personal Choice And Control

How to Sleep Better as a Teenager #AD

Teens are most likely to change when they recognize the problem themselves, and when they are optimistic about their ability to solve the problem. We can help by expressing our confidence in their abilities, and by emphasizing that we cant change themthat the choice about whether or not to change is the adolescents alone.

Dahl recommends saying something like this: Whether or not you make any changes in your activities or your behavior is entirely up to you. I definitely would not want you to feel pressured to do anything against your will.

Iv Competing For Sleep

Teens have to balance the weight of many demands on their time. The biggest of these demands is school. Most schools start class very early in the morning. After a long day at school, teens may also have to study for hours at home. An early start and a lot of homework can combine to make it hard for them to get to sleep on time.

Teens are faced with a lot of other things that compete for their time. Once they are old enough, many of them begin to work after school. Some simply want to have their own money to spend. Others have to do this to help their families. Older siblings may also be needed at home to look after younger brothers or sisters. After class is out, schools offer many sports teams, clubs, and activities that teens can join. These can take up as much time as a job. Of course, many teens also like to spend hours of their time with friends. With all of these options facing them, there simply isn’t enough time for teens to do it all. They have to give something up. Far too often, it is their sleep that gets left out.

Are Teens In America Getting Enough Sleep

By almost all accounts, many teenagers in America are not getting the recommended 8-10 hours of sleep per night. In the 2006 Sleep in America Poll by the National Sleep Foundation, 45% of adolescents reported getting less than eight hours per night.

The problem may be getting worse. Data from four national surveys conducted from 2007-2013 found that nearly 69% of high school students got seven or fewer hours of sleep per night. Estimates place the rate of insomnia in adolescents as high as 23.8%.

Insufficient sleep among teens has been found to be higher among women than men. Older teens report getting less sleep than people in early adolescence. Surveys have also found that teens who identify as Black, Asian, and multiracial have the highest rates of sleeping less than eight hours per night.

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Recommended Amount Of Sleep By Age

The amount of sleep a child should receive depends on how old they are. Infants ranging from 4-12 months should receive 12-16 hours of sleep. Children 1-2 should get 11-14 hours of slumber. Its recommended that children ages 3-5 sleep 10-13 hours including naps. Children ages 6-12 should get 9-12 hours of sleep per night. Finally, its recommended that teenagers ages 13-18 sleep for 8-10 hours.

Are Students Getting Enough Sleep


CDC analyzed data from the 2015 national and state Youth Risk Behavior Surveys.5 Students were asked how much sleep they usually got on school nights. Students who were 6 to 12 years old and who reported sleeping less than 9 hours were considered to not get enough sleep. Teenagers aged 13 to 18 years who reported sleeping less than 8 hours also were considered to not get enough sleep.

Students who get enough sleep may have fewer attention and behavior problems.

Middle school students

  • Students in 9 states were included in the study
  • About 6 out of 10 did not get enough sleep on school nights

High school students

  • National sample

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Take Care About Exercise Meals And Use Of Sleep

Exercise may be a great way to stay in shape and be healthy, but it should be avoided in the 4 hours just before bed. Otherwise, it may make you too alert to drift off to sleep. Likewise, late-night eating can disrupt sleep and may cause nighttime heartburn. Therefore, dinner or snacks should occur roughly at the same time each day and preferably hours before going to sleep.

Furthermore, teens should stay away from caffeine in the evening. This means not consuming drinks such as soda pop, tea, coffee, and energy drinks, and foods that contain chocolate. Caffeine works as a stimulant and will keep you awake. Nicotine and alcohol can fragment sleep as well and because of other bad health effects should be avoided entirely in teens.â

Ezzz Sleep Tips For Teens

So how can you change your sleep habits? Try these sleep tips:

1. Make your bedroom a quiet place. Turn your computer off before you get in bed. If your home is loud at night, wear earplugs.

2. Take a hot bath or shower before bed to boost deep sleep. Then keep your room cool to cool your body. One study showed that sleep happens when the body cools. Wakefulness occurs when the body temperature warms up.

3. If light bothers you, put blackout shades in your windows. Make sure your door is shut when you go to bed. Turn your clock with the face toward the wall, so you donât check the time all night long. You can also buy a lightweight and comfortable sleep mask at most stores that will cover your eyes and prevent light entry. When you get up on school days, open your shades, and turn on your light. The early light of day helps to âresetâ your brain to push your bedtime to an earlier hour.

4. If you are stressed, relax with soft music or yoga right before bedtime. If you canât relax, ask your doctor for help.

5. Go to bed early when youâre ill. Even an hour earlier each night can help give your body the sleep it needs to get well. Be sure to plan for this added sleep time if you have to get up early for school.

7. Use good night âscents.â Christie and Mitchell say aromatherapy can boost sleep. Try orange blossom, marjoram, chamomile, and lavender scents.

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Tips To Help Your Teen Sleep Better

Healthy sleep is critical during adolescence, but a nationwide survey finds many parents have sleep-deprived teens at home. Heres how to help.

Staying up late to scroll through social media and catch up with friends on phones may be second nature for many teens.

But the habit comes at a cost: Forty-three percent of parents say their teens struggle to fall asleep or wake up and cant get back to sleep according to the latest University of Michigan C.S. Mott Childrens Hospital National Poll on Childrens Health.

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More than half of parents of teens with sleep troubles think electronics are to blame.

Once they hit puberty, adolescents need eight to 10 hours of sleep per night, but just over a third of American teens say they are getting at least eight hours on a typical school night.

And research shows that inadequate or disrupted sleep can have long-lasting health effects.

Teen sleep deprivation is a growing public health issue because most young adults simply arent getting enough sleep, says Ellen Selkie, M.D., an adolescent medicine physician at Mott. We sometimes focus on sleep quality for young children but forget that adolescents brains and bodies are still developing, too.

For teen drivers, lack of quality sleep can be particularly dangerous, increasing their risk of car accidents.

Is Your Teen Sleep

Tips to help weary teens get a good nights sleep

Sleep is, arguably, the golden ticket to happiness. Our silver bullet to success. A straight shot to both physical and mental health.

I am writing this from the front lines: My 16-year-old stepdaughters messy bed. Its a little after 9 oclock. Macie is at her desk doing homework, headphones on. Shes studying for a Spanish test and a history test, both tomorrow. Shes thinking shell wake up early to do the reading for History. Im here because shes asked for support getting to bed earlier. This is awesome, that shes asked for support.

I feel a little useless. Im so sleepy at this time Im usually getting myself ready for bed.

Macie is not sleepyshes wiredbut shes exhausted. Shes been up late every night this week, studying. Last night she fell asleep studying around midnight she woke up at 3 am still fully dressed, on top of her covers, with all the lights on. This is not healthy, or good for her studies, mental health, happiness, or athletic performance. She is a junior in high school, and shes keenly aware that her grades matter a lot for her college applications.

Its not that I havent been nagging all my kids to get more sleep. Im like a broken record. Weve got four teenagersages 13, 14, 15, and 16that were constantly trying to get to bed at a reasonable hour.

I believe the train can be stopped. But how?

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Reflect What They Are Saying Not What We Wish They Were Saying

This can be a simple restatement:

Adolescent: You say that I have to try to get nine hours of sleep, but Im totally fine when I get six or seven. Parent: Youre not sure nine hours is really necessary.

Or, you can reflect what they mean but use different words:

Adolescent: Im not sleep-deprived!Parent: That label really doesnt fit you.

Or, try reflecting what they are feeling:

Adolescent: Im not tired!Parent: It makes you angry when you think we are telling you how you feel.

Finally, try amplifying or exaggeratingwithout sarcasm!what they are saying if the adolescent is showing signs that they are at least a little bit open to your influence:

Adolescent: Im really not sure that I need to get more sleep during the week.Parent: Its actually fine with you if you occasionally fall asleep in class, or get another cold, or dont do as well academically or athletically as you could.

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How Applied Behavior Analysts Can Help

In some cases, an applied behavior analyst can offer the help children and teens need to resolve psychological issues and improve sleep. There are several strategies that analysts may recommend or train parents to use, including extinction, faded bedtime, function-based intervention, and bedtime pass with extinction.

Bedtime Tips For Toddlers Kids And Teens

10 Ways to Get a Better Night

Its natural to adapt bedtime routines as your child grows.

In early childhood, many toddlers are gripped by the throes of separation anxiety. This is a good time to introduce a stuffed animal or comfort blanket for extra reassurance when you leave the room.

Toddlers will also try to assert their newly found independence by acting out or resisting bedtime. You can head off their stalling tactics by letting them make some of their own decisions, such as what pajamas to wear or which book to read. You may need to exert some creativity to make the bedtime routine more fun. When its time for lights-out, calmly and firmly bid them goodnight, and leave the room.

Once children hit school age, theyre ready to take on more responsibility. Encourage them to take an active part in the bedtime routine by brushing their own teeth and tidying up their bedroom before bed.

Teens have a better idea of what their bodies need, so you can give them more freedom over how they prepare for bed. That said, try to reign in weekend sleep-ins so they dont throw their bodies out of sync by the time Monday morning rolls around.

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Keep An Eye On The Homework

In college, I only pulled an all-nighter once to get a lousy B- on my Biochemistry final. I should have known better. Research has actually shown that getting sleep will help you perform better on a test than staying up all night studying. If you cant finish your homework at night, go to bed. Trust me. It will be there in the morning. If this happens a lot, please talk to your parents and your teachers. Believe it or not, theres not a lot of evidence that homework helps kids learn.

Help Them Make A Behavior Plan

If your teen indicates that they are ready to make a change, work with them. Do this only if you suspect that they wont be able to make a plan on their own, and if they indicate that they would like your help. Have them list:

  • The changes they would like to make
  • the most important reasons for those changes
  • the specific steps they plan to take
  • the people who can support themand precisely how those people can help and
  • the challenges or potential barriers to their successand specifically what they will do when they encounter these difficulties.

Have them tell you their vision for their successhow will they know that they have been successful, or if the plan is working?

All of these techniques take practice. But as with all new skills, these conversations get easierand we become more effective in influencing our kidswhen we practice, practice, practice.

In this posting, I drew heavily on Melanie A. Golds and Ronald E. Dahls chapter 38 in the anthology Behavioral Treatments for Sleep Disorders .

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Get Extra Sleep In The Morning By Avoiding The Snooze Button

Do you like hammering away at that snooze button? Me too. But heres the thing it feels great to get those extra ten minutes of sleep, but you are really cheating yourself. If you set your alarm at 6 AM but never get out of bed before 6:45 AM, just set the alarm to 6:45 and get out of bed. Even if you need 45 minutes to wake up at 6AM, that does not mean it will take you that long to get up at 6:45. Why? Because you have had an extra 45 minutes of uninterrupted sleep.

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When To Visit An Aba Therapist

If bedtime routines, consistent wake-up times, healthy diets, and other sleep-promoting habits fail to improve sleep quality, it may be a sign of deeper psychological issues that require professional help. Its important for parents to recognize when their children or teens should see a therapist.

Some of the signs that your child or teen may need to see a physician include being partially awake but appearing to be alert, persistent difficulties falling sleep, and persistent sleep terrors. Once your childs physician rules out any potential medical concerns related to these sleep disorders, you may consider seeing a behavior analyst to address behavioral interventions that can help.

How To Sleep Well If You Are A Teenager

This article was co-authored by . Dr. Marc Kayem is a board certified Otolaryngologist and Facial Plastic Surgeon based in Beverly Hills, California. He practices and specializes in cosmetic services and sleep-related disorders. He received his Doctorate in Medicine from the University of Ottawa, is board certified by the American Board of Otolaryngology, and is a Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons of Canada.There are 22 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page.wikiHow marks an article as reader-approved once it receives enough positive feedback. In this case, 82% of readers who voted found the article helpful, earning it our reader-approved status. This article has been viewed 126,931 times.

Medical professionals say teens should receive eight to 10 hours of sleep nightly. The National Sleep Foundation discovered that only 15% of teenagers reported getting eight-and-a-half hours on school nights.XResearch source The negative side-effects of teen sleep deprivation include increased feelings of depression, chronic headaches, and difficulty focusing in school. For these reasons, it is necessary that teens develop and maintain healthy sleep habits that will help falling asleep and quality of sleep during high school and college.

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