According to the CDC, teens need about 8-10 hours of sleep every night. Nationally, 72.7% of students, about 7 out of 10 high schoolers, don’t get the sleep they need. In Massachusetts, that number becomes 76.4%-82.5% of high school students that are sleep deprived. I am a part of these statistics. On the good days I get about 7 hours of sleep and on the bad ones I only get 4. Many of the other students at my high school are the same. Quite a few of my friends get even less sleep than I do. Some may even pull an all nighter. One reason for the lack of sleep is the shift in our circadian rhythms, which makes it difficult to go to sleep before 11 pm. Another is the early start times forcing us to get up around 6. In addition, our days are packed between homework assignments, sports, social lives, and family time.
In my town, the School Committee has been working on trying to change the school start times so that middle and high schoolers don’t have to get up so early. Currently, this has been put on hold due to coronavirus, but I hope that these changes will be implemented in the future.
Owens, Judith A, and Miriam R Weiss. “Insufficient sleep in adolescents: causes and consequences.” Minerva pediatrica vol. 69,4 (2017): 326-336. doi:10.23736/S0026-4946.17.04914-3
“MN and National Data on Teen Sleep.” Minnesota Sleep Society, www.mnsleep.net/school-start-time-toolkit/why-improve-sleep-for-teenage-students/mn-data-on-school-start-times/.
“School Start Times Study: Andover Public Schools - Official Website.” School Start Times Study | Andover Public Schools - Official Website, www.aps1.net/2033/School-Start-Times-Study.
“Sleep for Teenagers.” Sleep Foundation, 5 Aug. 2020, www.sleepfoundation.org/articles/teens-and-sleep.
“Sleep in Middle and High School Students.” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 5 Feb. 2018, www.cdc.gov/features/students-sleep/index.html.
“Why Is Sleep So Important?” Benefits of Sleep Hygiene, www.unitypoint.org/livewell/article.aspx?id=b8411be0-64c3-455e-8dbf-751925b41705.
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