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Teens Need More Sleep!

             For teens, the ring of their alarm clock at six in the morning is the most dreadful sound in the world. This is because their bodies are in sleep mode from about 11:00p.m. to 8:00a.m., yet they’re forced to “rise and shine” at the wee hours of the morning. How does lack of sleep effect teens? Students, like the ones at Sunnyslope, often come to school too sleepy to learn or perform to their best abilities, and they can suffer dire consequences that could have been avoided. For these reasons and more, it is absolutely necessary for high schools to begin school no earlier than 9:00 in the morning. .
             First of all, making school begin later will improve students’ health and demeanor. Teens need between 8½ to 9½ hours of sleep a night, however, according to the article “Sleep Trouble in School-Age Kids” by Patty Rhule, thirty percent of teens do not get enough sleep. Dr. Amy Wolfson, an associate professor of psychology and a sleep specialist, warns that sleep-deprivation can weaken the immune system. This makes teens more prone to getting sick and missing school, which might cause them to get behind in their classes. According to a study by the Center for Applied Research and Educational Improvement (CAREI), teens who are lacking in sleep are more likely to experience depression, difficulty relating to peers and parents, and are more likely to use alcohol and other drugs. Dr. Mary Carskadon, a psychology professor at Brown University, says, “fatigue leads to behavior problems that contribute to a negative overall school performance and experience”. Carskadon and the National Sleep Foundation recommend that schools review later start times that will concur with teens’ biological tendency to a later sleep and wake cycle. Lack of sleep can even endanger the lives of teenagers and other drivers, for Seventeen.com reports that young drivers are responsible for more than half of the 100,000 “drowsy driving” car accidents that occur each year.