The CDC says to catch more Zs

Graphic+by+Kelsey+Grissam

Graphic by; Kelsey Grissam

Graphic by Kelsey Grissam

Do you ever find it difficult to remain attentive during school? Do you often lack creative thinking?

If so, I have one more question for you: Did you get less than eight hours of sleep last night? If you answered yes, you are not in the minority.

According to the CDC, seven out of ten students do not get enough sleep on school nights. 

You may be asking yourself: Just how important is sleep? I’m here to tell you that it can make a world of difference on not only your academic performance, but also your mental health and overall physical health.

In some way, whether it be fueling motor skills such as walking or boosting your immune system to prevent sickness, the functionality of nearly every system within your body is reliant upon sleep.

Sleep also enables tissue and muscle recovery. So if you’re a student athlete and you find yourself still sore from a workout three to four days ago, it could do you some good to get a few extra hours of rest at night.

In fact, a lack of sleep directly correlates to an increased risk of getting hurt. Those additional hours can also help to prevent a season-ending injury.

So why do we students get less sleep? There are several external factors contributing to this, such as having too much to get done in one day or over-exposure to light from electronic devices; however, there is biological reasoning behind it as well.

According to The Sleep Foundation, experts found that teenagers don’t begin to fall asleep until later in the evening because the body waits longer to produce melatonin — the hormone that makes us tired. 

This “two-fold biological impulse” puts us high school students at a severe disadvantage.

It’s imperative that we take it upon ourselves to set a better sleep schedule. The daunting task of finishing assignments for seven classes may be enough to keep you up at night, but a schedule can make this easier for you.

Once you become accustomed to your new routine, your time management skills will get better and you won’t have to stay up until daylight to complete homework. 

The CDC recommends that high school students get eight to ten hours of sleep every night. Neglecting to do so can negatively affect your emotional development and cause or worsen mental health problems.

Reasons such as these emphasize why getting the adequate amount of sleep is essential. Setting a reasonable daily routine for yourself can benefit your life in the short run and the long run.

So give your mind and body a rest and catch some Zs.

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