Research tells us that approximately 8-10 hours of sleep must be invested to maintain a healthy lifestyle. But what if this 8 hours of sleep is cut by half? This is what many students are experiencing on a daily basis, resulting in an unhealthy lifestyle both physically and mentally.
With approximately 90 percent of students sleep-deprived (according to a 2014 survey), some drastic change must be implemented to make this number go down. This raises the question, should schools do something to prevent sleep deprivation in students? The main solution to this problem is ultimately dependent on both students and schools, as they both have to work to prevent sleep deprivation.
According to the Huffington Post, sleep deprivation can cause mental health issues, issues with learning and behavior, substance use and abuse, higher risk of obesity, and more. Clearly, chronic sleep deprivation is a legitimate concern, not just a nuisance. Although education is extremely important for students, health should be prioritized over anything else as it is the ultimate factor in our survival. Students at this age are still growing and developing into adults, a crucial stage that requires a smooth transition. However, sleep deprivation can hinder this sort of development.
Students can help resolve this problem by managing time wisely. By allocating time, students can prevent distractions and focus on the task at hand, such as homework or studying, and thus get to bed earlier. The lack of distractions and proper time management can temporarily end sleep deprivation by itself.
However, with the immense popularity of the internet and social media, distractions are often unavoidable for most people. To push away all distractions seems unlikely, as many students are still tempted to go online. Limiting these distractions seem somewhat reasonable, but still cannot end sleep deprivation in total. In addition, many students participate in after-school activities, clubs, and sports, limiting the time of sleep. Because of this, schools must also play a role in preventing sleep deprivation.
The main way that schools can resolve this problem is by pushing back school times. This can allow students to adjust their sleep schedule, allowing them to sleep for longer periods of time. According to DailyMail.com, a teenager’s body clock is behind an adult’s, meaning that students are not alert during morning classes. Pushing back the beginning of school would allow students to return to their optimal schedule and be more alert during their morning classes.