Study: Students don't get enough sleep before school - WNEM TV 5

Study: Students don't get enough sleep before school

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Sleep deprivation is a major and chronic problem for American teenagers.

The problem is restarting the debate over school start times as students may not be getting enough sleep to succeed.

New research suggests teen brain activity peaks in the afternoon, meaning students are not in school when learning can best occur.

Dr. Christopher Allen agrees with a new study from the American Academy of Pediatrics which said teens are not getting enough sleep.

According to the National Sleep Foundation, adolescents need eight to 10 hours of sleep a night. The study found 75 percent of students were getting significantly less than recommended.

Allen works at Covenant Healthcare in Saginaw. He said this is not an issue to be taken lightly.

"They build up that sleep debt and that can lead to serious complications with their health in the future," Allen said. "If the schools started at a later time, in theory that should help," Allen said.

A local bus driver, Margie Weiss, agrees students should get enough sleep. However, she thinks a later start for schools could be disruptive as they develop into young adults.

"I don't know that it's that different from a work life or an adult. And I think that school should prepare you to be an adult, career type of thing and keeping certain hours helps build day to day structure," Weiss said.

She thinks the focus should be on the teens' bedtime instead of the time they have to wake up.

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