The cost of lost sleep.
Getting enough sleep is a common problem among teenagers. Find out how cutting these hours of rest can ruin teen health.
Sleep matters. Teens need about eight to 10 hours a day, but surveys show that few get that much sleep on school nights. Read on to learn how that lost sleep can impact your life.
Your physical appearance changes:
- You get pimples.
- You gain weight. When you're tired, you're more likely to overeat and to eat sweets, fried foods and other calorie-heavy stuff.
- You look tired. Because you feel tired.
Your brain power slumps:
- You're forgetful. Your memory is poor.
- You're less alert than usual. You're also slow to react. That makes you a danger behind the wheel.
- You have difficulty focusing and learning. Your grades may suffer as a result.
Your emotions are erratic:
- You're irritable, impatient or angry.
- You're getting into more arguments than usual.
- Your mood is pretty low. You might even be depressed.
Your physical health suffers:
- You get sick.
- Your hormones get out of whack.
Your performance slips:
- You don't move as fast as you could.
- Your favorite video games are more of a challenge than usual.
Five tips for better sleep:
- Stick to the same sleep-wake schedule every day.
- Switch to caffeine-free drinks by late afternoon.
- Turn off the TV, computer and phone as bedtime nears.
- Keep your bedroom dark, cool and quiet.
- If you still can't get enough sleep, talk to your doctor.
Sources: American Academy of Sleep Medicine; National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute; National Sleep Foundation