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Kid Companions- Chewelry: Apr 12, 2010

April 12, 2010

Teen’s Lack Of Sleep May Be Cause Of Depression

Lack of sleep is not just a symptom of Depression but studies show it can either cause or worsen it.

In the Jan.1, 2010 issue of SLEEP, researchers at Columbia University found a strong link between lack of sleep and depressive symptoms in adolescents. SLEEP is the official publication of the Associated Professional Sleep Societies, LLC (APSS) a joint venture of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine and the Sleep Research Society... to read  more  

 Parents cannot force their teen to sleep but setting earlier bedtimes helps and seems to have a protective effect. Most teens need about 8½ to more than 9 hours of sleep each night. The study found that adolescents with parental set bedtimes of midnight or later were 24% more likely to suffer from depression than adolescents with parental set bedtimes of 10:00 PM or earlier.

However, earlier parental-mandated bedtimes must be accompanied by lifestyle changes that will facilitate the teen to fall asleep.

*Schedule enough time to relax before the agreed upon bedtime.

*Teach your child how to handle stress so he does not carry his worries to bed.

*Encourage your teen to participate in daily physical activities inducing adequate quality sleep.

*Remove all electronics from the bedroom: computer, television, phone, cell phone, video games…

*Eliminate drinking coffee and other drinks and food with caffeine and sugar late in the day.

*Encourage your youth to eat balanced meals

Studies can state facts and findings, parents can state rules and repercussions, but no one can wave a magic wand and make a teen fall asleep. You and your teen have to want this or it will not work. Like all other matters in life, ensure this problem is tackled early and prevent serious mental health conditions such as depression which are much more difficult to deal with.

What advice can you share on how to assure your teen gets the required hours sleep?

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