Friday, December 3, 2010

Teenagers Need Sleep

I have often heard that teenagers need more sleep than infants.

Experts rank their need at a minimum of 9 hours,
and a maximum of about 11.

Let's choose ten hours, a nice round number, 
right in the middle of the varied expert opinions.

If they go to bed at 10, they should sleep until 8am.
If you want to get them up at 7am,
you'd have to put them to bed at 9pm.

Yea, right.  My second grader hardly gets to bed by 9pm,
I can't imagine trying to  get the teens to bed this early.
I don't even want to go to bed this early!

I have now been the mother of teenagers for over ten years,
totally agree and understand this need for sleep.

After a few years of struggling against the tide,
I realized if I let them sleep in a little longer,
they worked harder and were done earlier with school.

The earlier they started, the longer it took.

I decided instead of just studying about how many hours of sleep they needed,
we would count it Health class and make sure they were getting enough sleep.

Even as I say this, I feel like I have to defend myself as a
homeschooling Mom who decides to swim against the current.

I felt bad, knowing the public high school kids started much earlier,
until I read articles  like this one about how these students struggled.

"The eyes are open, but the brains are asleep," says Mary Carskadon, director of chronobiology at E.P. Bradley Hospital in Rhode Island and a professor in the psychology and human behavior department at Brown University School of Medicine. "This (8am class) is not a time of day when teenagers can be reasonably expected to participate in class."

So, I can cast out my guilt, and let my teens sleep in to a reasonable time as needed.

(taken at a fabric store)

Cuz teens need more sleep than babies, ya' know.

Psalm 4:8
 I will both lie down in peace, and sleep;
For You alone, O LORD, make me dwell in safety.


  1. I'm sooooo telling on you! If the store people saw that, they'd have a fit. LOL!

  2. I totally am with you on this! When my first teen hit 9th grade, I let him determine his own schedule basically with some requirements. He went up to his room at 11:30 p.m. When he actually went to sleep was up to him. But he had to be awake and showered by 10:30 a.m. This worked well for him. I will say one thing--it was a HARD adjustment for him to get up for an 8 a.m. class this first year in college. But he has managed fine and has only missed a few.

  3. "Eyes are open, brains are asleep" SOOO TRUE!!
    I'll be showing this blog to all of my 8am lecture professors :) hehe

  4. I will keep this in mind when I have teens. :-) You may have to remind me, though!

  5. I need more sleep now than I did when I was a teenager...maybe I'm just trying to catch up?

  6. I can't imagine teens...jeepers, my oldest is 7, and I know it is coming...but jeepers!

    As for sleep, someone needs to do a study on how much sleep mommies really need. I vote for 12 hours a day!

  7. I have heard this before and can see it in my own home. My 19 year old gets up for college when he needs to, but sleeps in all the other days when he can, but he regulates it well himself. Very interesting topic!

  8. Mindy~Thanks for brightening and warming my heart today. You have touched my spirit so many times as I read your posts.
    I pray peace, patience and abundant health for you in this year of 2011.


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