Waking up on the other side of the bed is a reality that most people experience. Mild cases of irritability may apply to some people, but the consequences of a short, restless night of sleep can be far more severe.
UNM College of Education & Human Sciences (COEHS) Associate Professor Ryan Kelly have highlighted these effects in multiple recent research studies. In family and child research, Kelly focuses on understanding how sleep affects the health of teenagers.
“If you don’t get enough sleep, not only will it affect you tomorrow, but the effects will last over time,” Kelly said.
By impact, Kelly points to increased incidences of anxiety, depression, and anger.
“These are things that a lot of us care about, right? We all want optimal mental health to work,” he said. “Many of us have symptoms of depression. Some of us are aggressive. Problems related to sleep can undermine our mental health in very powerful ways.” ”
of study and research Taking 246 teenagers aged 15 to 16 for multiple years in a row, Kelly and his fellow researchers found that the theory resonated tenfold, eventually being published in Child Development. I was.
“Sleep has both short-term and long-term effects on mental health. In our sample, we also consistently found that teenagers were not getting enough sleep. – Professor Ryan Kelly
Parents also reported worsening mental health functioning in participating teens. , was a particularly strong predictor of symptoms of depression, anxiety, and aggression.
“Mental health is declining May It spills over into the classroom,” Kelly said.
Ensuring young people repeatedly get enough sleep is not the only thing that can make a difference. It’s also important not to trade it for intense time spent doing.
“It’s also a sleep-related problem,” he said. “It’s the change in sleep that actually makes you feel sluggish, which affects mental health outcomes. It’s especially relevant to teenagers.”
Your repetitive nighttime routine may seem tedious and in need of change, but the benefits of sleep are unwavering. Department of Health and Human Services It promotes a healthy immune system and weight, improves mood and learning ability, and reduces accidents such as crashes caused by drowsiness.
“Sleep is multifaceted and multidimensional. We look at sleep from all these different angles,” Kelly said.
New Mexico’s teenage sleep trends have a whole other layer. With one of the highest poverty rates in the country, he A staggering 25% for children under the age of 18teenagers from low-income families, Unlikely sleep longer or better;
They are often preoccupied with making ends meet, or worried about their parents doing so, taking care of sleeping as easily as they do.
“After a day with all these symptoms, the child has to face all these stressors and add to sleep. It’s kind of a tipping point,” Kelly said.
Kelly sees the domino effect. Teens sleep less when poverty and stress rates are higher. Lack of sleep can affect your mood and impair your academic performance.
“The brain really develops and goes through different processes during the night. It creates and filters information during the night,” he said. “So, especially if teens aren’t sleeping, their brains won’t get the chance to develop the way they otherwise could.”
Adults can also benefit.Kelly has also examined The effects of sleep deprivation on parents revealed increased levels of demanding parenting. Fathers, in particular, tended to become aggressive toward their children when they lacked rest.
“If fathers aren’t getting enough sleep, they don’t raise their children according to their values, perhaps how they want to raise their children,” he said. “They may become dysregulated, exhausted, and end up doing things that conflict with how they want to see themselves as parents.”
So what can we do to help the previous and next generation of high school students handle their studies and mental health while enjoying life? I have a suggestion.
“High school often starts early. It’s not compatible with a teenager’s bioregulatory system. We have teenagers who sit exhausted in their first period. Delaying start times is one of the puzzles.” It may be a piece,” he said.
Part of this possible improvement is due to brain changes that occur during puberty. During this developmental period, the brain often delays bedtime and wake-up time.
“Early in puberty, important changes occur, including the release of the hormone melatonin, and we see major shifts in the teenage bioregulatory system,” says Kelly. “What that means for teens is that they have a hard time falling asleep early at night or waking up early in the morning. They go to bed late and wake up late.”
A later start time allows students to sleep later.Recommended for American Academy of PediatricsThis indicates 8:30 AM or later as the ideal time for the first period.
“High school start time is a step,” Kelly said. “While it won’t solve all the problems in the world, it can help teens get 30 or 40 minutes more sleep, which helps with mental health functioning and schoolwork.” There is extensive research on
Clearly, there’s a lot of good news when it comes to a complete, regular sleep schedule for all ages. It may be time to throw it away, he says.
“It’s a common misconception that teens don’t need a lot of sleep,” he said. “You ask, ‘You can sleep when you die, right?'” “Waking up early gets worms.”
The benefits of being aware of your sleep schedule and taking steps to correct it can make cranky teens a persona of the past.
“A lot of us are interested in how we can perform at our best,” Kelly said. “When teenagers sleep more, they are better positioned for optimal development in school and mental health. Teens to be as good as they can be. ”
focus on sleep, Faculty of Education and Human SciencesRead each of Kelly’s Over 30 peer-reviewed publications and research paper in Google Scholar.