What’s your take on sleep? I stand pretty firmly in the camp that sleep is the foundation for holistic health. Turns out our teens might not be sleeping when we think they are. Are your kids being social media’s vampires? Vamping Teenagers Are Up All Night Texting.
When my kids were little, I remember people saying “you are so good about putting the kids to bed early, I just can’t do it.” And I was always curious because I did it because I believed kids need sleep, but even more because I knew that I needed a break. For me, I felt like I needed a break from being “mommy” from 8pm until 11pm (our kids often wanted us for random reasons at night). And that was a strong impetus for me to get them to bed early.
Now, with a 12 year old, I feel like I am swimming upstream in an even bigger way because so many of his peers say they go to sleep very late and some of them have their phones in their rooms. And here I am…still wanting the kids to get 10 hours of sleep. I think I might be all alone in this. But my kids can fall asleep by 8:30 and sleep until 6:30 or even 7, so I know they need the sleep. I really believe that when they get 10 hours of sleep, they are more patient, focused, and fun.
When our kids are about in the high school age range, their sleep rhythms shift to a later sleep time (closer to 11pm) but if kids are up vamping (or even doing homework) and then up for an early start for school, they are likely not getting enough sleep.
The consequences for adolescents not getting enough sleep (from the Adolescent Sleep Needs and Patterns Report by the National Sleep Foundation) are:
- Increased risk of unintentional injuries and death
- Low grades and poor school performance
- Negative moods
- Increased likelihood of stimulant use
I’m a little worried that kids aren’t getting enough sleep and these consequences are undesirable. Then when we add in the pressure to text and use social media in the dark of night it seems like it’s a super slippery slope. Can they handle getting even LESS sleep?
What are you doing in your house to make sure your kids are getting a healthy amount of sleep? Recently, I heard a panel of high school seniors speak and one of the girls said that she wished her parents would set more clear boundaries on the usage of her phone because she knows she is addicted and feels like she would like a break. Very interesting.
Comment below if you have any thoughts or want to share what you do in your home regarding sleep. How about you? Do YOU get enough sleep? Studies show that most people are suffering from not enough sleep and don’t appreciate how much it impacts us.