Sleep Deprivation In Schools Essay

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Sleep Deprivation as Enabled by High Schools Have you ever had that nightmare where you’re sitting in class and the teacher is passing out a test, and you look down at it, only to discover that you have no idea what anything on that test means? Thanks to an epidemic of sleep deprivation among teenagers, that nightmare is becoming more and more a reality. As the homework and academic demands grow higher, teenagers are spending less time sleeping than they should be, leading to a myriad of problems. Decline of academic performance is among them. Schools should make changes that could be easily accommodated, such as starting an hour later and assigning less homework, to help end sleep deprivation among teenagers since sleep is increasingly important …show more content…
The brain is beginning to mature, the body undergoes strenuous changes, and havoc is wreaked on the emotions as hormone levels and interests change (Conner). Sleep is vital for all of these things to happen naturally. Perhaps the most visible effect of sleep deprivation is the decline in academic performance in the form of lower grades, tardiness or absence in class, and trouble focusing (Williams). Teenagers are almost stereotypically notorious for all of these things, but it may be due more to a lack of sleep than laziness. As previously stated, the release of melatonin in a teenager’s brain begins later at night, but it also continues for more time in the morning (Williams). This means that not only are teenagers having a harder time paying attention at school, but they are also at risk for drowsy driving, a condition that is just as dangerous as drunk driving (“Facts”). Physical health is not the only thing at risk here, either. The lack of REM sleep puts a lot of stress on high school students’ mental and emotional stability. Teenagers who experience a lack of sleep are more likely to experience mental issues such as depression and anxiety (Conner), and these can all lead to a greater risk of substance abuse as well. The short of it is that teenagers need more sleep, and school and homework are two activities that can easily be

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