Can Lack of Sleep Lead to Teen Depression


Some parents set later bedtime for their teens with a view to make them complete their academic work for the day. When this is the case of some kids, some of them go to bed late after watching television or video games or after sitting in the computer for several hours. Irrespective of the reason behind late bedtime, the resulting shorter sleep duration appears to be related to the development of depression in teenage children. This report was submitted by experts after conducting a cross-sectional analysis.

Katherine K. Dahisgaard, a lead psychologist at the Anxiety Behaviors clinic has pointed out that she had come across teens sitting in front of her and explaining the anxiety and depression they are facing. When these kids were asked their bedtime, the answer given by most of them was around 1.30 at night. Also, these teens just have five to seven hours of sleep during weekdays and a little more during weekends. Psychologists have pointed out that this type of sleeping habit is not at all good for the mental wellness of teens.

Katherine’s approach:

Katherine, generally warns the teens approaching her for signs of teen depression, stating the high-risk associated with sleepy driving. She also recommends parent to nag their teenager to go to bed early. She has added that this approach may be wrong, but it is done for a good cause. This is because sleep deprivation can lead to depression and it can be pointed as an alarming sign to mental health problems as well.

A study:

A study was conducted by a group of researchers among more than 3000 children between the age group of 11 and 17 based in Houston. These teens were interviewed about their sleep habits and mental health and they were also asked to fill questionnaires. After a year, these kids were met again to gather further information about their present level of sleep and mental health. The result of the research was that sleep deprivation has greatly increased the risk of developing teen depression.

Why teens do not get enough sleep?

The first and foremost reason is the hormonal shifts at this age and the internal circadian clock that naturally keeps them active. Also, in the present social networking world, they have snapchatting, instagramming, texting, Facebook and many other commitments to their friends in addition to the task of completing their own homework. Also, the early starting time of school forces them to get up early, even when they go to bed late.

Average time of sleep needed:

Generally, teens need nine to ten hours of sleep at nights. On the other hand, the average time of sleep reported nearly by 20% of teens is just 6 hours at night, which is far behind the actual requirement.

Parents’ responsibility:

Now, most of the parents have a question as to what to do? They can educate their teens with opinions and facts about the importance of sleep. Parents can also help them in completing their homework quickly, they can fix a regular bedtime and force their kids to stick to the time. Also, electronics items can be kept away from their rooms to avoid teen depression.

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