“In recent years, school leaders have highlighted that quality sleep is an important precondition for academic success, helping young people pay attention and retain material.”
By Asher Lehrer-Small
When parents tell Denise Pope, an adolescent well-being expert, they’re worried for their children’s mental health, she responds with a question.
“How many hours are they sleeping?”
That catches many parents off guard, says Pope, co-founder of the Stanford University-affiliated nonprofit Challenge Success. Few see their teenage children’s mental health as linked to their sleep schedules. And besides, most parents go to bed before their high school-aged kids anyway, right? When Pope points out that teenagers need about nine hours of sleep each night, many parents scoff.
As concerns for youth depression, anxiety and suicide have skyrocketed amid a deadly pandemic that disrupted schools across the country and isolated teens from their friends, researchers agree that consistent, sweet slumber can go a long way toward making students feel better…
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