Thursday, October 18, 2012

Morning of the living dead

Sue Shellenbarger, WSJ, Oct 17, 2012, says it is not your imagination—when a kid becomes a teen, their body clock goes haywire.

And—there is a connection between loss of sleep and weird teen behavior.

Duh.

They are bigger risk-takers, have less self-control, sometimes hook class, and can get depressed or even suicidal.

In other words—teen zombies. And maybe heavy, pimply ones, at that.

In a 2010 study at the Univ of British Columbia, says sleep loss in the teen years can affect brain development.

One teen said he needed 10 hrs a night, and never got it. This made him more emotional when breaking up with his girlfriend.

Only 76% of teens get the full 9-10 hours. Kids don’t get tireder and tireder as the day moves on.

They also become less sensitive to morning light—which in adults sparks alertness.

Still, school starts as early as 7:30 AM. Some schools start later—which has improved test scores—but most school systems say no because of afterschool sports schedules and the cost of bus operation.

Also, teens tend to sleep the same amount as their friends do—which makes sense because they probably keep each other up.

One thing teens to respond to—the idea that sleeping more cuts weight gain and may make for clearer skin.

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