Solingen 93

Domestic Violence and Abuse

Sleepy teens: A public health epidemic | Wendy Troxel | TEDxManhattanBeach

Translator: Joanna Pietrulewicz
Reviewer: Krystian Aparta It’s six o’clock in the morning, pitch black outside. My 14-year-old son
is fast asleep in his bed, sleeping the reckless,
deep sleep of a teenager. I flip on the light and physically
shake the poor boy awake, because I know that,
like ripping off a Band-Aid, it’s better to get it over with quickly. (Laughter) I have a friend who yells “Fire!”
just to rouse her sleeping teen. And another who got so fed up that she had to dump cold water
on her son’s head just to get him out of bed. Sound brutal … but perhaps familiar? Every morning I ask myself, “How can I — knowing what I know and doing what I do for a living — be doing this to my own son?” You see, I’m a sleep researcher. (Laughter) So I know far too much about sleep and the consequences of sleep loss. I know that I’m depriving my son
of the sleep he desperately needs as a rapidly growing teenager. I also know that by waking him up hours before his natural
biological clock tells him he’s ready, I’m literally robbing him of his dreams — the type of sleep most associated
with learning, memory consolidation and emotional processing. But it’s not just my kid
that’s being deprived of sleep. Sleep deprivation among
American teenagers is an epidemic. Only about one in 10 gets
the eight to 10 hours of sleep per night recommended by sleep scientists
and pediatricians. Now, if you’re thinking to yourself, “Phew, we’re doing good,
my kid’s getting eight hours,” remember, eight hours is the minimum recommendation. You’re barely passing. Eight hours is kind of like
getting a C on your report card. There are many factors
contributing to this epidemic, but a major factor preventing teens
from getting the sleep they need is actually a matter of public policy. Not hormones, social lives or Snapchat. Across the country, many schools are starting
around 7:30am or earlier, despite the fact that major
medical organizations recommend that middle and high school
start no earlier than 8:30am. These early start policies
have a direct effect on how much — or really how little sleep
American teenagers are getting. They’re also pitting
teenagers and their parents in a fundamentally unwinnable fight
against their own bodies. Around the time of puberty, teenagers experience a delay
in their biological clock, which determines when we feel most awake
and when we feel most sleepy. This is driven in part by a shift
in the release of the hormone melatonin. Teenagers’ bodies wait to start releasing
melatonin until around 11pm, which is two hours later than what
we see in adults or younger children. This means that waking a teenager up
at 6am is the biological equivalent of waking an adult up at 4am. On the unfortunate days
when I have to wake up at 4am, I’m a zombie. Functionally useless. I can’t think straight, I’m irritable, and I probably shouldn’t be driving a car. But this is how many American
teenagers feel every single school day. In fact, many of the, shall we say, unpleasant characteristics
that we chalk up to being a teenager — moodiness, irritability,
laziness, depression — could be a product
of chronic sleep deprivation. For many teens
battling chronic sleep loss, their go-to strategy to compensate
is consuming large quantities of caffeine in the form of venti frappuccinos, or energy drinks and shots. So essentially, we’ve got an entire population
of tired but wired youth. Advocates of sleep-friendly
start times know that adolescence is a period
of dramatic brain development, particularly in the parts of the brain that are responsible for those
higher order thinking processes, including reasoning, problem-solving
and good judgment. In other words, the very type
of brain activity that’s responsible for reining in those impulsive
and often risky behaviors that are so characteristic of adolescence and that are so terrifying
to us parents of teenagers. They know that like the rest of us, when teenagers don’t
get the sleep they need, their brains, their bodies
and behaviors suffer with both immediate and lasting effects. They can’t concentrate, their attention plummets and many will even show
behavioral signs that mimic ADHD. But the consequences of teen sleep loss
go well beyond the classroom, sadly contributing to many
of the mental health problems that skyrocket during adolescence, including substance use, depression and suicide. In our work with teens
from LA Unified School District, we found that teens with sleep problems were 55 percent more likely
to have used alcohol in the past month. In another study with over
30,000 high school students, they found that
for each hour of lost sleep, there was a 38 percent increase
in feeling sad or hopeless, and a 58 percent increase
in teen suicide attempts. And if that’s not enough, teens who skip out on sleep
are at increased risk for a host of physical health problems
that plague our country, including obesity,
heart disease and diabetes. Then there’s the risk
of putting a sleep-deprived teen, with a newly minted driver’s license, behind the wheel. Studies have shown that getting five hours
or less of sleep per night is the equivalent of driving with a blood
alcohol content above the legal limit. Advocates of sleep-friendly start times, and researchers in this area, have produced tremendous science showing the tremendous benefits
of later start times. The findings are unequivocal, and as a sleep scientist, I rarely get to speak
with that kind of certainty. Teens from districts
with later start times get more sleep. To the naysayers who may think
that if schools start later, teens will just stay up later, the truth is, their bedtimes stay the same, but their wake-up times get extended, resulting in more sleep. They’re more likely to show up for school; school absences dropped
by 25 percent in one district. And they’re less likely to drop out. Not surprisingly,
they do better academically. So this has real implications
for reducing the achievement gap. Standardized test scores
in math and reading go up by two to three percentage points. That’s as powerful as reducing class sizes
by one-third fewer students, or replacing a so-so teacher
in the classroom with a truly outstanding one. Their mental and physical health improves, and even their families are happier. I mean, who wouldn’t enjoy a little
more pleasantness from our teens, and a little less crankiness? Even their communities are safer because car crash rates go down — a 70 percent reduction in one district. Given these tremendous benefits, you might think, well, this is a no-brainer, right? So why have we as a society
failed to heed this call? Often the argument against later
start times goes something like this: “Why should we delay
start times for teenagers? We need to toughen them up
so they’re ready for the real world!” But that’s like saying
to the parent of a two-year-old, “Don’t let Johnny nap, or he won’t be ready for kindergarten.” (Laughter) Delaying start times also presents
many logistical challenges. Not just for students and their families, but for communities as a whole. Updating bus routes, increased transportation costs, impact on sports, care before or after school. These are the same concerns
that come up in district after district, time and again around the country as school start times are debated. And they’re legitimate concerns, but these are problems
we have to work through. They are not valid excuses for failing to do the right thing
for our children, which is to start middle and high schools
no earlier than 8:30am. And in districts around the country, big and small, who have made this change, they found that these fears
are often unfounded and far outweighed by the tremendous
benefits for student health and performance, and our collective public safety. So tomorrow morning, when coincidentally we get
to set our clocks back by an hour and you get that delicious
extra hour of sleep, and they day seems a little longer and a little more full of hope, think about the tremendous power of sleep. And think about what a gift it would be for our children to be able
to wake up naturally, in harmony with their own biology. Thank you, and pleasant dreams. (Applause)

Cesar Sullivan

100 thoughts on “Sleepy teens: A public health epidemic | Wendy Troxel | TEDxManhattanBeach

  1. Well, I'm alive thanks to the coffee.

    I wake up at 5/4.40 a.m and this isn't normal. 2 coffees each day so I will not be a zombie .

    I'm 14 and I'm destroying my health by getting 4-3 hours of sleep.
    Well good luck for everyone

  2. Whatever school systems plan, there is good & bad. My district recently moved their schedule from an 8:00 to 8:30 start time. Of course, this moved the end time from 3:30 to 3:45, and pushed sports, clubs, and other activities further as well. I believe that the real problem is the 7-9 period schedule. With that many classes, usually needing to last 45-60 minutes, a school day becomes 7-8 hours long. With many school systems around the world leading with top ranking education systems that can reduce or even half this number, I believe the real problem is a standard for students and schools which is unreasonable and inefficient for real & practical learning.

  3. Starting school 1st period later doesnt even fix the whole problem, try making morning practices for sports later which most kids are in

  4. One of the reasons why japanese students are thought of as “super smart”. Partially because of our ideology of hard work, but because our schools start at 8:50 am.

  5. I get around 3-5 hours of sleep a night depending on what extracurriculars I have that day. On my longest days Im in classes from 6:00am to 8:30 pm and then by around 9:30 I can start my homework after Ive eaten and showered and all that jazz. Also I'm now getting 30 min less of sleep when my school switched its start time later, because my 6:00 am seminary class didn't get pushed back cause there are kids in seminary who go to a private school who's start time didn't get pushed back. Yay!

  6. When ur school starts at six thirty, u have to get up at 5 and u have practice from 6 til 9:30 pm and u have all honors class which has at least an hour of homework each and u regularly have less then 2 hours of sleep every night. And she's talking about 5 hours like its a shocker. One week I slept 7.5 hours the whole week including the weekend. Please America. I'm tired let me sleep

  7. Bruh I feel bad for American kids. In England school starts at 8:30 but I’m made to get up at 6 am every day and it doesn’t help that I have Narcolepsy

  8. For me it's much easier to get up after 6 hours of sleep when I start work at 8, than after 8 hours of sleep when I used to work at 7. Idk why and my mum doesn't understand me, she says "just go to sleep earlier" but it doesn't work. Maybe it's something psychological like in my mind 6 o'clock is not the time to get out of bed, or maybe there's not enough sunlight…

  9. It's sad because lots of parents start work at 7 and they need to get their children ready for school and maybe drive them to school before work, so the kids can't sleep until 7 and start school at 8.30 ☹️ I used to start work at 7, it was horrible, I had to get there by bus that arrived at 6.30. Now in my new job I set my alarm at 7.00 am☺️

  10. School should start later and there should be fewer classes. For example in my country there are religion classes, not to teach kids about different religions, but to brainwash them with Catholicism. And those classes are twice a week from primary school until the end of high school (12 years), it's ridiculous! They should completely cancel those, and get less of some other less important classes, and let the kids sleep. And less homework!

  11. bro i have to wake up at 6 am but im meant to have 8-10 hours of sleep i cant sleep that early i get home at like 5:30 pm every afternoon sometimes longer bcuz the trains in Australia are horrible.

  12. I am in middle school and our school starts at 8:20 but it really doesn’t help and the later we start the later I get out of school meaning I don’t have as much time to do what I want then pushing back the time I go to sleep

  13. Ironically, I have to wake up at 4:30 am and get home from school at 4:30 pm, usually don't get more then 5 hours of sleep.

  14. She’s not even talking about student athletes who’s schedules is
    6:00AM-6:30AM Wake Up/ Will Yourself Out of Bed
    6:30AM-7:30AM Weight Lifting
    8:00AM-3:00PM School
    3:30PM-10:00PM Sports (On Gamedays)
    10:30PM-12:30AM Homework/Study
    12:45AM Mentally and Physically exhausted finally fall asleep
    Really in my opinion the problem is homework it literally murders my will to live every night.

  15. I’m struggling so much right now in school cause I have four academic classes when everyone else only had three or less. I have bio 11, Chem 11, physics 11, and geography 12 and it’s even worse because I have sports practice every second night and on top of that I have volleyball games and running trips to go on which means I’m going to miss 6 classes this week and I just caught up and am going to be behind again. And some teachers don’t care that you have sports they just say you should be able to do just as much work as the rest of the class and it’s so infuriating!!!! Like seriously I have more work than anyone in my class give me some slack!

  16. When I said I need 1 hour of sleep at least to function right… well looks like I'm wrong oh its 10:12 maybe I should prepare to wake up at 4:45

  17. Oof I'm 14 I legit fall asleep at like 7 or 8 and wake up at 5 and watch videos until im suppose to wake up lmao I have a social life and I hang out with people late at night I just really like sleeping lmao

  18. My middle school starts at 8 AM, I wait for the bus at 7:30, I go to bed at 9:30 (but I fall asleep a while later) and wake up at 6:20 and I can never wake up. The school tells us to "oh, get a good night's rest!" and "oh, eat breakfast and get your work done so you can be prepared for school!" then i go to school and can never concentrate because im so tired because of the time i have to wake up for school. then they tell us to pay attention and theyre confused why we're so tired. i cant go to bed early because of all the work i have to do. also, over the weekends i go to bed when im tired, and bc of my sleep schedule, that usually means I go to bed around 9:30 as well, but i wake up around 8-9. over the summer i fall asleep around 11-2 and sleep until 12.

  19. I remember in 3rd grade I moved to a new city and had to go to a new school and I was amazed and shocked that literally all the other kids on the bus were asleep with their faces pressed against the window until we got to the school and they all got up like zombies with their face still red from the windows and no one said anything at all they were basically lifeless. They were so tired that 80% of the class had messed up hair and cowlicks because they didn't have enough time to do homework, chores, enjoy themselves briefly and then go to bed just to get up early because of how far away the school was. This was everyday.

  20. I feel like 8:30 am is still very early because students aren't waking up at 8:00 to go to school for 8:30. They are waking up at 7 to shower, deal with the family, eat a meal, then get on a bus at 8. My school started at 8 but I still had to wake up at 6 if i wanted to be ready and at the busstop with breakfast because that's just how the timings worked out.

  21. My school starts at 8:45 (Australia) but I have to be up before seven so I can catch a bus plus I have many out of school activities combined with homework means I have to use time that I could use sleeping for school work,

  22. Trying to plot how much time to sleep be like:

    “Okay, school starts at 8:00am, but I take the bus which leaves at 7:15am, so I should wake up at 6:30am to get ready and walk to the bus stop, and I can sleep on the bus and we have English today I can probably sleep in that class, my teacher won’t notice-“

    I shouldn’t be doing this. I should be able to sleep.

  23. I am really luck because our high school starts at 9:00 but because I live in Texas we need to do sports in the morning so I end up waking up at 5-6am everyday

  24. Does anyone relate like
    when i have less hours to sleep i get more anxious and it makes it hARDER for me to fall asleep Cus all I can think about is how aware I am of how little sleep I’m gonna get Cus I have so much things to do the next day.. It’s so ironic . When I need more sleep on certain days to prepare me for tests and what not , I get anxious thus getting less sleep.. oh also not to mention doing schoolwork until the next morning isn’t even new.

  25. Science: Teens need more sleep to be more energized. They need this to be academically better.
    Filipino Schools: Okay. school starts at 6:30am

  26. My English teacher from sixth grade has had a caffeine addiction for years now because she has to get to school at like 4/5 am🥶🥶

  27. This talk makes me appreciate my school's 8:30 start time.

    When I was in elementary school they moved the start time back 30 minutes from 8:00 to 8:30, I remember my dad being pissed, "It'll just make you lazy!". I wish I could show him this.

  28. I wake up at 5:00am, get on the bus at 6:20am, get to school at 7:45am, get on the bus home at 2:37pm, get home at 4:00pm, bed time is 9:00pm. 8 hours of sleep, 4 hours for homework (excluding dinner time). Winters in our area are long and awful, with snow to my waist from October to March. Have to stand outside at 6:10 for 10 minutes waiting for the bus, which sometimes during the winter takes up to 40 minutes.

  29. Lol I literally go to school from 8am to 6pm almost everyday, with at most 3hours of "pause" per day, with homework when I get home, while doing sports 3hrs a week. It's crazy to think my case isn't even extreme lol ; I have friends who do the same, with at least 3hrs of academic sports every 4 days out of 5… 8hrs of sleep is a myth to me lol.

  30. guys, the solution is obvious… sleep harder! i've tried this multiple times, and if you focus hard enough, you can get all the sleep you need!!!

    just clarifying, that was a joke. im hella tired all the time

  31. and here I am at 1AM knowing I have to wake up by 6, remembering how I slept for only 3 hours yesterday…
    watching this video and panicking

    hoho life is fun

  32. Me : watching a ted talk on teenage sleep deprivation and appalled
    Also me : a 14 year old watching a ted talk on teenage sleep deprivation and appalled at 2am

  33. Question: if teen bedtime stay the same in placed where they wake up later then wouldnt it be easier to make bedtime sooner so that they get that perfect amount of sleep instead of trying to change all of society? Seems simpler. And I was a teen once. I promise you I remember that I purposefully went to bed later if I knew I had nowhere to be the next morning or if there was some other motivating factor, like a tv show. I would like to see the study where it showed teens kept to regular bedtimes. Younger children I would believe, but teens are more independent and tend to have a more flexible bed time.

  34. I sleep on average 13-16 hours whenever I don't have school, when I do have school I typically get less than 5 hours, around that.

  35. Health is THE top priority in life. Not "a", "one of", "important", "a top priority", THE TOP PRIORITY. Food, Water, Sleep, that's it.

  36. So that school should establish 2 hour of sleep class EVERYDAY instead of lectures class….This is what we want

  37. 8-10 hours of sleep for me is a myth. i try hard to complete my 8 hour sleep from 1 to 6 but who is going to study extra at 4 or 5 before going to school+assignments+loads of homework and the main study

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