Teenagers and Sleep

teenagerssleepTeenagers often have a difficult time sleeping. They have the pressures from just about everywhere: they need to get good grades in school, to obey their parents, to “fit in” with their peers, etc. Unfortunately they also have more complex sleep disorders, including:

Delayed Sleep Phase Syndrome (DSPS)

Their normal 24 hour rhythms are shifted later than “normal.”  This makes them need to go to bed later and sleep later in the day to feel more refreshed.

Narcolepsy

These kids suffer from excessive sleepiness every single day, regardless of how much sleep they get.
For more information about Narcolepsy click here.

Poor sleep hygiene/lack of sleep

They choose to text or play on the computer rather than attempting to initiate sleep.

Sleep apnea

They struggle during the night to get enough air.
For more information about pediatric sleep apnea please click here.

Sleeping in on weekends

Many kids need to “recover” from not sleeping enough during the week.  Unfortunately, these kids will stay up later on the weekends and will sleep in late. This may inhibit these kids from falling asleep on Sunday night at their scheduled bedtime, since they “just woke up” 8-10 hours earlier.

Recreational drug use

Recent studies suggest that by the 8th grade, 29.5 percent of adolescents have consumed alcohol, 15.5 percent have smoked cigarettes, and 15 percent have used marijuana.

As a parent, what should I be looking for if I suspect a sleep disorder in my child?

If your child is exhibiting any of these signs or symptoms, there may be a sleep disorder and an appointment to see Dr. Roy should be considered:

  • Falling asleep in school
  • Falling grades
  • Increased awakenings during the night
  • Snoring on most nights
  • “ADD” or “ADHD”
  • Feelings of “creepy-crawly” sensations on the legs at night
  • High Blood Pressure

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Huntsville, Alabama

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Madison, Alabama

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Decatur, Alabama